A Student’s Abridgment of the

AGELESS WISDOM

Volume VII - “The Rays and the Initiations

This series provides large-format abridgments

 of the seven core books written by Alice A. Bailey,

 that together comprise a large portion of that vast

body of knowledge known as the Ageless Wisdom.

Please visit TheAgelessWisdom.info for more information.



TABLE OF CONTENTS

Extract of a Statement by the Tibetan
Introduction by the Editor

PART ONE

Fourteen Rules for Group Initiation
Preliminary Remarks
Introductory Statements
Rule I – Group Being and Function
Rule II – Accepted as a Group
Rule III – The Dual Moving Forward
Rule IV – Evocation of Will
Rule V – The Macrocosmic Whole
Rule VI – The Group Moves Onward
Rule VII – The Word of Invocation
Rule VIII - The 7, the 3 and the 1
Rule IX – The One Initiator
Rule X – The Creative Sound of OM
Rule XI – 4th Great Cycle of Attainment
Rule XII – Illumined Group Service
Rule XIII – The Hidden Mystery
Rule XIV – The Fivefold Demand

PART TWO

The Rays and the Initiations
Introductory Remarks

Section One

The Aspirant and the Mysteries of Initiation
The Entering of the two Doors of Initiation
The Door to the Way of the Higher Evolution
The Entering of the Ashram
Seven Groups of Ashrams within the Hierarchy
The Dual Life of the Initiatory Process
Dual Life of the Disciple
Dual Existence of the Master
The Science of the Antahkarana
Building the Antahkarana
Nature of the Antahkarana
Bridge between the three Aspects of the Mind
Bridge as the Agent of Alignment
Technique of Construction
Six Stages of the Building Process
The Immediate Task Ahead
The Seven Ray Methods
The Meaning of the Initiatory Process
Fusion of the Master’s Consciousness with that of the Disciple
Impression on the Mind of the Disciple of Hierarchical Intent

Section Two

The Aspirant and the Major Initiations
The Relation of the Seven Rays to the Initiations
The Rays and the Initiations Confronting Humanity
First Initiation: The Birth (Ray 7)
Second Initiation: The Baptism (Ray 6)
Third Initiation: The Transfiguration (Ray 5)
The Significance of the Initiations
First Initiation: The Birth at Bethlehem
Second Initiation: The Baptism in Jordan
Third Initiation: The Transfiguration



EXTRACT OF A STATEMENT BY THE TIBETAN

I am a brother of yours, who has traveled a little longer upon the Path than has the average student, and has therefore incurred greater responsibilities.  I am one who has wrestled and fought his way into a greater measure of light than has the aspirant who will read this, and I must therefore act as a transmitter of the light.  My work is to teach and spread the knowledge of the Ageless Wisdom wherever I can find a response, and I also seek to help the Masters M. and the Master K.H. whenever opportunity offers.    

If a teaching can bring forth a response from the illumined mind,

a flashing forth of the intuition, then let that teaching be accepted, but not otherwise.

INTRODUCTION BY THE EDITOR

This abridgment is dedicated to the Tibetan and Alice A. Bailey,

and to all engaged with the work of uplifting the consciousness of humanity.

The work accomplished by Alice A. Bailey and the Tibetan, since revealed as the Master of Wisdom known by the name of Djwhal Khul, can hardly be given too much praise for in the Blue Books they succeeded in delivering a great deal of the Ageless Wisdom to the world.  Their seven core books, each masterfully presented with the clarity and order of a textbook, represent the essential current of Truth that runs through the sciences, religions and philosophies of Man, and unites them all under cosmic law.  Within their body of work are found the laws and processes that underlie the love of the Christ and the wisdom of the Buddha.  Herein are found answers to the true nature of God, the Cosmos, Spiritual and Solar Fire, the not-self and the true Self.

I demonstrate my gratitude for their service by attempting to apply the essential teachings in my life, and this abridgment is just such an attempt.  I am confident that the work was overseen not only by my Higher Self, but by both DK and AAB, for I felt their presences throughout the process.  The sutratma that they created between themselves and their body of work is strong and alive with vibrancy, and it was their discrimination that I relied upon when selecting text for inclusion.  Yet, the karma for errors and omissions between the Treatise and this humble abridgment, must necessarily rest upon my shoulders.  I freely offer this abridgment to the world in the spirit of love and intelligent service, and I believe it will, as a thought-form rightfully conceived and constructed, succeed in its purpose.

The purpose of this abridgment is threefold:

1.  To coalesce a condensed form of the Ageless Wisdom, and this for three reasons:

  1. To assimilate the data and develop an efficient method of studying the essential teachings.
  2. To circulate, teach and learn the Ageless Wisdom with friends and family.  To create a study guide and teaching aid.
  3. To transmit the essential teachings to those Seekers who may not take the time to read the full Treatise, with the goal of transmitting 70% of the essential teachings with only 30% of the study.

  1. To promote awareness of the Ageless Wisdom within studious occult circles, such as the Hermetic Qabalists, Christian Mystics, Ceremonial Magicians and Astrologers.  Some within these groups suffer heavily under dogma and misunderstood tradition, and will benefit greatly by the study of Cosmic Law.

  1. To quantify, demystify and promote awareness of the Ageless Wisdom in the global population. This has in mind the following four aspects:

  1. General psychology and self-improvement:  Through a greater perspective of one’s microcosmic self, as well as Man’s position within the planetary scheme, individuals will be able to respond to life’s challenges with greater mobility and intelligence.

  1. Unification of science, religion and philosophy:  Through an understanding of the Law of Analogy, the scientist who studies the Ageless Wisdom stands to gain much when he considers the living atom of matter.  The orthodox Christian may find illumination as to the nature of God, the Father and the Son, while philosophers will discover the occult reason behind that warmth, which is felt as individual, brotherly and group love; all will benefit through knowledge of the concrete processes and abstract interactions that occur in, and actually create of their own essence, the seen and unseen worlds around us.

  1. Harmlessness, through right thought and speech:  Through a proper comprehension of the power of thought-forms, individuals will come to control the lower impulses, to seek harmlessness in all that they do, and to eventually radiate only the true essence of their Egoic Ray.

  1. Intelligent individual and group activity:  Societal reforms based on the Ageless Wisdom will promote enhanced unity within the human collective, and the intelligent organization and activity that will result is the natural flow of evolution, for the Divine Plan works toward the greatest good of all.

In Unity, Love and Light,

Patrick Westfall    

PART ONE

THE FOURTEEN RULES FOR GROUP INITIATION

PRELIMINARY REMARKS

It might be here of value, my brothers, if I again laid emphasis upon the fact that the formless world is only entered when the aspirant has acquired somewhat the capacity to center himself on the abstract levels of the mental plane. This involves necessarily certain developments within the aspirant's own nature. The demanded contact would otherwise be impossible. What is needed is self-exertion, the resultant developments of which might be touched upon as follows:

  1. The Repolarisation of the Entire Lower Man so that his attitude toward the aggregate of forms which make up his field of general contact has changed. He is no longer deluded by the things of the senses but has in his hand that thread or clue which will eventually guide him out of the maze of the lower life perceptions into the field of clear knowledge and the realm where daylight is found; he will then no longer need to walk in the dark. This repolarisation is brought about in four ways, each of which provides the next step forward, and in their totality (and when definitely followed) will eventuate in the total subjugation of the personality. These four ways are:

  1. A constant and unfailing attempt to center the consciousness within the head. From this central position the real man, the directing agency will direct and guide all his members, imposing upon the "lunar lords" of the physical body a new rhythm and habit of response. Two factors are of value and helpful in the production of the necessary polarisation:

  1. The reiterated appreciation of the words "I am the Self, the Self am I."
  2. The habit of early morning meditation wherein the Thinker centers himself in the point of control and starts upon his day's experience and contacts with the realisation that he is only the Observer, the Perceiver and Actor.

  1. A close consideration throughout the day as to the use and misuse of energy. Every man should realise that in the use of energy lies direction and the treading of the Path. It produces eventually truthful manifestation and the displaying of one's light in order that circumstances may be irradiated and fellow pilgrims helped. Students should familiarise themselves with the "energy concept" and learn to regard themselves as energy units displaying certain types of energy. In this connection it should be borne in mind that when spiritual energy and material energy (the two opposite poles) are brought into relationship, a third type of energy is produced, and the work of the fourth or human kingdom is to demonstrate this peculiar type. It might serve to clarify thought if students remembered that:

  1. Superhuman entities display spiritual energy.
  2. Subhuman entities display the energy of matter.
  3. Human entities display soul energy.

In the perfect manifestation of these three will the plan of creation be consummated. It should also be borne in mind that these three are nevertheless a manifestation of duality—spirit and matter—and that this is the manifestation of a great Existence and of His appearing. Therefore, what are called the "three gunas" in Hindu philosophy are but the qualities He manifests through these types of entities.

Superhuman lives express sattva, the guna of rhythm and of harmonious response to divine urge, of perfect display of coordinated cooperation with the purpose of manifestation.

Human lives demonstrate the quality of rajas, of mobility, of constant and conscious change in order to ascertain what is the Real and through the medium of experience demonstrate the true nature of rhythmic response.

Subhuman lives express the guna of tamas or of inertia. They work blindly and have no ability to respond consciously to the plan. They are the sumtotal of the "units of inertia" just as the human units are called "the points of light moving within the square." This may have its appeal to Masons.

This subject of the use or misuse of energy is capable of infinite expansion, and in my other books where I give you more upon the centres I have enlarged upon it. I but seek at this time to give you that which can be of immediate use to students and thus lay the foundation for later work.

  1. A close study of the needed transmutation of astral and emotional energy into love, the energy of love. This involves the sublimation of personal feeling into group realisation or consciousness, and when carried out successfully produces in time the construction of a higher and subtler body, the buddhic sheath. When this sheath is thus materialised a very high stage of advancement is marked, but the earlier stages can be intelligently approached by any earnest student and probationer. To transmute emotion into love the following realisations will be found necessary:

  1. A realisation that all moods, all display of sorrow, of pain, or of happy excitement are due to  our  identification with the objects of desire, with the form aspect, and with that which is material.

  1. An understanding of the emotional or astral body and the place it plays in the student's development. It should be recognised as the shadow of the monad, and a connection should be traced between

The Astral Sheath - 6th Plane

The Buddhic Sheath - 4th Plane

The Monadic Sheath - 2nd Plane

and the place the love petals in the egoic lotus play should also be carefully considered.

  1. A comprehension of the potency of the astral sheath owing to its undivided nature.

  1. A study of the purpose of the solar plexus, and the part it plays as an organ of transference of energy from the three great centres below the diaphragm to the three higher centres. There is a very close analogy here to the solar lotus, the egoic body, occupying a midway point between the threefold Monad and the threefold lower man. The more advanced should follow this.

  1. The development of the faculty of mind control, so that the Thinker grips and holds steady the mental processes and learns to regard the mind as the interpreter of the states of consciousness, as the transmitter of egoic intent to the physical brain and as the window through which the Ego, the real Man looks out upon vast and (to the majority) unknown fields of knowledge.

  1. An emergence into Manifestation of the Subjective Aspect in Man. One of the objects of evolution is that the subjective reality should eventually be brought forward into recognition. This can be expressed in several symbolic ways, all of them dealing with the same one fact in nature:

The bringing to the birth of the Christ within. The shining forth of the inner radiance or glory. The demonstration of the 2nd or the Love aspect. The manifestation of the solar Angel.  The appearing of the Son of God, the Ego or the Soul within. The full expression of buddhi, as it utilises manas.

This emergence into manifestation is brought about through what is understood by the following terms:

  1. The refining of the bodies which form the casket or sheath hiding the reality.

  1. The process of 'unveiling' so that one by one those bodies which veil the Self are brought to a point where they are simply transparencies, permitting the full shining forth of the divine nature.

  1. An expansion of consciousness, which is brought about through the ability of the self to identify with its real nature as the Onlooker, and no longer regarding itself as the organ of perception.

  1. A Re-alignment of the Lower Sheaths so that the contact with the Real Man, the Thinker, the Solar Angel, on the higher levels of the mental plane may become complete and continuous. This only becomes possible as the other two points are beginning to be grasped and the theory as to man's constitution and purpose is somewhat understood. As meditation is practiced, as the lower bodies are painstakingly dominated, and as the nature of the Sutratma or Thread is better comprehended it will become increasingly possible to bring into the lower personality on the physical plane that spiritual illumination and that divine energy which is the soul's heritage. Little by little the light will shine forth, year by year the strength of the higher contact will grow, gradually the downpour of divine love and wisdom into the head centres will be increased until eventually the entire lower man will be transformed, his sheaths will be refined, controlled and used, and he will demonstrate upon earth the powers of Director, Teacher or Manipulator according to the major ray upon which his Monad may be found.

  1. A Series of Tests Leading to Initiation. When a man is beginning to demonstrate the qualities of his ray and to prove of gradually increasing importance to his group, he will be prepared through tests, through trials, and through temptations for those final stages in development which will put into his power:

  1. The knowledge of certain laws governing matter and form.
  2. The keys of the mysteries connected with energy, with polarity, and with group relation.
  3. Certain Words of Power which will give him control over the elemental forces of nature.
  4. Insight into the planetary plans.

Upon these I need not enlarge, nor need I take up with you here the subject of initiation. (Discipleship in the New Age, Volumes I and II). The first work to be done is the stimulating of aspirants and the preparing of the few earnest ones to tread the Path of Discipleship. The final point of our theme concerns:

  1. The Basic Essential of Pure Character. This is something more than just being good. It deals with the matter aspect and has relation to the hold or control that the form has over the man. We might express it this way and therefore give its more occult connotation. If one or other of the three lower elementals (the physical, the astral and the mental) are the controlling factors in the life of the man, he is—by that very fact—put into a position of danger and should take steps to arrest that control prior to an attempt to enter into the formless realm. The reason for this will be apparent. Under the governing law of matter, the law of Economy, the elemental life will attract to itself similar lives and this will result in a dual danger. These dangers are:

  1. One: the gathering into the form, through the dominant note sounded by the form elemental, of matter with a synchronous vibration. This will tend to increase the magnitude of the task before the Ego and sweep into increasing dominance the lower man. The "lunar lords" will become increasingly powerful and the solar Lord correspondingly less august.

  1. Two: the man will find himself surrounded in time with thoughtforms of a lower order (from the standpoint of the soul) and before he can penetrate into the Arcana of Wisdom and find his way into the Master's world he will have to dispel the clouds of thoughtforms which he has attracted to himself.

Unless the disciple learns that aspiration and self-discipline must proceed side by side, he will find that the spiritual energy he may appreciate and contact will only serve to stimulate the latent seeds of evil in his nature and thereby demonstrate the exactitude of the truth that the great Lord taught when He pictured the man who swept his house, cast out seven devils and eventually was in a worse condition than ever. It is essential that aspirants should understand the nature of the lower man and should grasp the fact that every coherent system has its varying types of energy, and that perfection is achieved when the highest type of energy inherently possible dominates.

If the lower energy of the aggregate of the form-atoms is the controlling factor three things will take place:

  1. The form itself will grow by accretion and will become ever more potent, until the dominant voice of its 'lunar lords' will stifle all other voices and the man be swept back into Inertia, Blindness and Bondage.

  1. Many people are not only under the control of some one or other of their forms but are the captives of all the three. In studying the lower threefold man and the energies or lives that seek to control him it should be remembered that they fall into three categories:

  1. The individual tiny lives which we call the atoms or cells of the body. These exist in three groups and compose respectively the four types of bodies: dense physical, etheric, astral and mental.

  1. The aggregate of these lives which constitute in themselves four types of elementals or separate coherent, though not self-conscious, existences. These four lunar lords constitute what the Ageless Wisdom teaching calls "the four sides of the square." They are the "lower quaternary," "the imprisoning cubes," or the cross upon which the inner spiritual Man is to be crucified. These four elementals have an intelligence all their own, are upon the involutionary arc, are following the law of their own being when they tend to become powerful, and thereby fully express that which is in them.

  1. A dominant controlling lunar lord who is that which we understand by the term the 'lower personality'; he (if the personal pronoun can be used) is the sumtotal of the physical, astral and mental elementals, and it is this power which at present forces the 'fiery energies' of the body to feed the lower three centres. The etheric body has a unique and curious position, being simply the vehicle for prana or life and the centre which it uses exists in a category by itself.

  1. All subhuman forms in their aggregate prove a powerful deterrent factor in the progress towards emancipation of the Real Man. They form the opposite to what we understand by the world of the Master and the two are in direct opposition to each other from the standpoint of the aspirant.

The adept can enter the world of form, can contact it, work in it and remain unaffected by it because there is nothing in him to respond to it. He sees through the illusion to the reality behind and, knowing where he stands himself, there is naught in the appeal and the demand of these lunar lords to attract him. He stands midway between the pairs of opposites. In the realisation of the nature of this world of form, in a comprehension of the lives which compose it, and in an ability to hear the voice of the "formless One" above the strife of all the lower voices, comes the opportunity for the aspirant to escape from the dominance of matter.

This is the true magical work, my brothers, the understanding of the sounds of all beings, and the ability to speak the language of the soul is the clue to the work. These faculties rightly used impose upon these lesser lives that control which will lead to the final liberation, and which will in due time, lead these lives themselves into the realm of self-consciousness. This aspect of the matter is as yet but little comprehended by the sons of men. If they but realised that by a disposition to fall under lunar control they drive the tiny lives in their little system deeper into the darkness of ignorance, they might more rapidly assume their just responsibilities; if they realised that by the constant attempt to impose the rhythm of the solar Lord upon the aggregate of the lunar lords, they were driving these lives onward to self-conscious unfoldment, they might proceed more earnestly and more intelligently. This is the message that must go forth, for all the varying aspects of the life of God are interdependent and not one proceeds onward into fuller realisation without benefitting the entire group.

A few simple suggestions I will give you. These can be useful to all sincere aspirants. In the ordered regulation of the life comes eventual synthesis and the right control of time with all that eventuates therefrom. In the right elimination of that which is secondary, and in a sense of rightly adjusted proportion comes that accuracy and one-pointedness which is the hallmark of the occultist. In the right aspiration at the appointed time comes the necessary contact and the inspiration for the work that has to be done. In the steady adherence to self-appointed rules comes the gradual refining of the instrument and the perfecting of the vehicles that will be—to the Master—the medium of help among many little ones. I commend the above thought to you knowing that you will apprehend the implications and will seriously consider the purport of my remarks.

The world today is in the throes of agony. Just as in the evolving Ego, the moment of greatest development is oft the moment of greatest pain (if apprehension measure up to opportunity) so in the evolving world. To those of you who have the inner sight and intuitive comprehension comes the opportunity to aid that apprehension and to lead a despairing world—deep cast into darkness and distress—one step nearer to the light. The work you have to do is to take the knowledge which is yours and adjust its application to the world's need so that recognition of the truth may be rapid. In the heart of every man lies hid the flower of the intuition. On that you can depend, and no eternal or cosmic fact clothed in a suitable form will fail to receive its meed of recognition and understanding.

  1. INTRODUCTORY STATEMENTS

Students at this time would do well to remember that all basic and fundamental changes taking place upon the physical plane are necessarily the result of inner subjective causes, emanating from some level of the divine consciousness, and therefore from some plane other than the physical. The fact that tremendous and unusual upheavals are taking place in the kingdoms of nature is attributed by men to other men or to certain forces generated by human thinking, frailty and ambition.

Is it not possible that these changes are being brought about as the result of certain profoundly important happenings upon inner planes of such advanced states of consciousness that all the average disciple can know about them is their word symbols and their much deleted effects—if I may use such a phrase to describe the happenings which are rending humanity today. The evil that is being wrought today on earth, by certain evil members of the human family, are effects of their response to the inflaming energies and indicate their basic wickedness and their prompt reaction to that which is counter to the good. Wherever the consciousness is focussed, there is the point of major emphasis and importance, and this is true of the individual man and of humanity as a whole. The significance of the present happenings is interpreted (and necessarily so) in terms of human awareness and responsiveness. This world war and its inevitable consequences—good and bad—are looked upon as concerned primarily with humanity, whereas that is not basically so. Humanity suffers and experiences as a result of the inner occurrences and the meeting of subjective forces and inflaming energies.

It is of course not possible for me to give you any true picture of the interior events and happenings in the life of our planetary Being. I can only indicate and point out that the world situation is simply an embodiment of the reaction and the response by mankind to great paralleling and originating happenings which involve the following groups:

  1. The emanating Avatar and His relationship to the Lord of the World, our planetary Logos.

  1. The Lords of Liberation, focussed in Their high place, as They become conscious of the invocation of humanity and become more closely related to the three Buddhas of Activity.

  1. The Great Council at Shamballa and the planetary Hierarchy.

  1. The Buddha and His Arhats as They unitedly cooperate with the Christ and His disciples, the Masters of the Wisdom.

  1. The Hierarchy, the embodiment of the fifth kingdom in nature, and its magnetic attractive rapport with the human kingdom, the fourth.

  1. The effect of all these great groups of Lives upon humanity, and the inherent consequences as they work out in the subhuman kingdoms.

A study of the above in terms of forces and energy will give some idea of the underlying synthesis of relationships and the unity of the whole. There is therefore a line of descending energy which has its origin outside our planetary life altogether; the inflow of this energy, its inevitable effect under cyclic law and its consequences, as they work out upon the physical plane, has produced and is producing all the changes of which mankind is so terribly aware at this time. This swings into immediate conflict the past and the future, and in this statement

I have expressed the deepest esoteric truth which mankind is competent to grasp; it brings into a culminating struggle the Great White Lodge and the Black Lodge and opens the door to great contending energies which we can call spirit and matter, spirituality and materialism, or life and death. These words are, in the last analysis, as meaningless as the terms good and evil, which have significance only in the human consciousness and its inherent limitations.

These descending energies, as they pass through any of the major levels of consciousness which we call planes, produce reactions and responses, dependent upon the state of the conditioning consciousness, and (strange as this may seem to you and well-nigh unintelligible) the effects upon the Hierarchy are even more compelling and transmuting than they are upon humanity. I would add also that the point of lowest descent of the energies has now been reached, and the nature of the present opportunity is therefore changing. These energies have now passed what we might call the turning point and have reached their point of ascension, with all that that phrase implies. As they descend, they produce stimulation; as they ascend, they produce transmutation and abstraction, and the one effect is as unalterable as the other. It is upon this inevitability of the ascending energies, and the effects which they will bring about, that the entire hope of the future depends; nothing can arrest their return or their progress through the planes and back again to their source. Upon this dual process of descent and ascension the whole cyclic panorama of manifestation rests, and upon the inflow and activity of new and higher energies the whole fact of the evolutionary process depends.

It will therefore be apparent to you that the descent of energy brings with it—under the cyclic law— certain new "inspirations," certain new "seeds of hope" for the future, and certain active Agents as well, Who are and will be responsible for the task of preparation, of fertilisation and of all the coming new age enterprises. These descending energies evoke also the obstructing forces, and I would here remind you that these obstructing evil forces (so-called) are met with upon the highest spiritual levels because they are—in their turn—evoked by the impelling impact of the coming Avatar Whose "note is heard ahead of Him, and His energy spreads before Him." This is a great mystery and can only be understood (and then merely theoretically) if you bear in mind that all our planes—even the very highest—are the subplanes of the cosmic physical plane. When this fact is somewhat grasped there comes a simplification of thought.

As a consequence of all this, great and fundamental readjustments are going on within the Hierarchy itself and within that intervening area of the divine consciousness to which we give the name (as far as humanity is concerned) of the Spiritual Triad—an area covered by the higher mental planes, the buddhic and the atmic levels of awareness and of divine activity. The downpouring avataric stimulation is enabling certain of the Masters to take some of the major initiations, and to do so far earlier than would otherwise have been possible. Thus a great process of ascension and of spiritual attainment is under way, though as yet only its faint beginnings can be traced, owing to the intensity of the point of conflict. Hence also many probationary disciples are finding their way into the ranks of accepted disciples, and many disciples are taking initiation. To this fact of hierarchical upheaval— paralleling and intensifying the upheaval upon the physical plane—can be traced the process of preparation which I have instituted among some disciples, thus hastening the period and point of attainment, provided I receive due cooperation from them. (Discipleship in the New Age, Vols. I and II.)

As regards the Hierarchy itself, speaking esoterically and technically, its Members (many of Them) are "being abstracted from the middle point of holiness and absorbed into the Council of the Lord." In other words, They are passing onward into higher work and are becoming custodians of the energy of the divine will and not simply the custodians of the energy of love. They will work henceforth as power-units, and not just as units of light. Their work becomes dynamic instead of being attractive and magnetic, and is concerned with the life aspect and not just with the soul or consciousness aspect.

Their places are being taken—under the Law of Ascension—by Their senior disciples, the initiates in Their Ashrams, and (under the same great process) the place of these initiates, who are thus being "raised" to more important work, is being taken by disciples and probationers. It is this truth, misinterpreted and shockingly travestied, which lies behind the teaching anent the so-called Ascended Masters, put out by the leaders of the "I AM" movement, thus prostituting and bringing down almost into the realm of cheap comedy one of the most notable happenings which has ever taken place upon our planet.

There is therefore, owing to the inflow of energy from extra-planetary sources, a general shifting of the focus of consciousness of embodied and disembodied lives at this time; this shift is one of the prime factors producing the present disruption. Students today are searching for the causes in human motives, in past history and in karmic relationships. To these they add the so-called factor of wickedness. All these factors of course exist, but are of lesser origin and are inherent in the life of the three worlds. They are themselves set in motion by far deeper-seated factors latent in the relationship between spirit and matter and inherent in the dualism of the solar system, and not in its triplicity.

This dualism, as far as our planet is concerned, is profoundly affected by the will-purpose of the Lord of the World and by the intensity of His one-pointed thought. He has succeeded in achieving a point of tension, preparatory to bringing about stupendous changes in His life-expression, within His vehicle of manifestation, a planet. This point of invocation will be evocative of great happenings, and will involve every aspect of His nature, including the dense physical; this of necessity involves also all that concerns the human family for "in Him we live and move and have our being." Those three words or phrases express the triplicity of manifestation, for "Being" connotes the Spirit aspect, "moving" the soul or consciousness aspect, and "living" signifies appearance upon the physical plane. Upon that outer plane the basic synthesis of incarnated life is to be found.

It will be apparent to you, therefore, that in this achievement of planetary tension it is not life in the three worlds that is the sphere of this tension, but the realm of hierarchical activity. The shift resulting from this point of tension, the "moving" which is its consequence, is in the realm of soul experience and soul awareness. The secondary effect can be noted in the human consciousness by the awakening which has been going on among men—an awakening to the higher spiritual values, to the trends and ideologies which are everywhere appearing, and to the clear lines of demarcation which have emerged in the realm of human determinations and objectives. These are all the results of great changes in the field of the higher consciousness and are conditioned by the soul of all things, lying largely in the realm of the anima mundi; of this great sumtotal the human soul and the spiritual soul are but aspects or expressions.

It is these changes in the "moving, shifting realities" of the soul consciousness and spiritual awareness of the Members of the Hierarchy which are responsible for the new trends in the life of the Spirit and the new methods in training disciples—in such an experiment, for instance, as externalising the Ashrams of the Masters. It is this new approach to life conditions, as a result of the inflow of new energies, which is producing the universal trend towards group awareness, and its highest result in the human family is the taking the first steps towards group initiation. Such a thing as group initiation was never heard of prior to the present time, except in connection with the higher initiations emanating from the Shamballa centre. Group initiation is based upon a uniform and united group will, consecrated towards the service of humanity and based upon loyalty, cooperation and interdependence. In the past, the emphasis was upon the individual, his training and approach to initiation, and his solitary admittance to the Temple of Initiation. But this individual concentration will, in the future, give place to a group condition which will enable several disciples unitedly to move forward, unitedly to stand before the Initiator, and unitedly and simultaneously to achieve the great realisation which is the result and the reward of successful discipleship.

In the first thesis which I presented to the public I outlined the Rules for Applicants, (Initiation, Human and Solar), summarising the past propositions and indicating the individual preparation and requirements. These will now apply to the probationary groups of disciples, and not to accepted disciples. They must and will still remain the character and purificatory objectives of the dedicated individual, but are regarded as adequately grasped by humanity; they have been proclaimed by all the great world religions down the centuries and have been recognised as the main conditioning qualities of all disciples.

These same Rules or Formulas of Approach are the lower correspondences of higher rules to which groups of disciples are pledged to conform, and which they must follow and obey together. The Hierarchy into which they will enter when full acceptance and demonstration have been shown will be the same Hierarchy, characterised by the same soul awareness, animated by the same spiritual activity, functioning under the same laws, but conditioned by two progressive and evolutionary developments:

  1. A much closer contact—invocative and evocative—with Shamballa, and therefore a fuller responsiveness to the Will aspect of divinity.

  1. An invocative attitude on the part of humanity, based on a fundamental decentralisation of the selfish human consciousness and a rapidly awakening group consciousness.

In reality, this means that the Hierarchy will be more closely related to the Great Council at Shamballa, and very much more closely interrelated with humanity, so that a dual fusion will be taking place. This will bring about that integrative process which will be the quality of the New Age and will inaugurate the Aquarian phase of planetary history.

I would now like to bring into a close relation the earlier imparted Rules for Applicants and the new Rules for Disciples, embodying the new group activity and group discipleship, resulting in group initiation.

These Rules are fourteen in number.  Today I will simply give you, first of all the rule for the individual disciple, and then its higher corresponding rule for groups in preparation for group initiation, reminding you that such groups are ever composed of those who have taken the first initiation, and the name of these is legion. They are to be found in every country. There are not, however, so many who are ready for the new era of group initiation.

Rule I

For Applicants: Let the disciple search within the heart's deep cave. If there the fire burns bright, warming his brother yet heating not himself, the hour has come for making application to stand before the door.

For Disciples and Initiates: Within the fire of mind, focussed within the head's clear light, let the group stand. The burning ground has done its work. The clear cold light shines forth and cold it is and yet the heat—evoked by the group love—permits the warmth of energetic moving out. Behind the group there stands the Door. Before them opens out the Way.  Together let the band of brothers onward move—out of the fire, into the cold, and toward a newer tension.

Rule II

For Applicants: When application has been made in triple form, then let the disciple withdraw that application and forget it has been made.

For Disciples and Initiates: The Word has now gone forth from the great point of tension: Accepted as a group. Withdraw not now your application. You could not, if you would; but add to it three great demands and forward move. Let there be no recollection and yet let memory rule. Work from the point of all that is within the content of the group's united life.

Rule III

For Applicants: Triple the call must be and long it takes to sound it forth. Let the disciple sound the call across the desert, over all the seas and through the fires which separate him from the veiled and hidden door.

For Disciples and Initiates: Dual the moving forward. The Door is left behind. That is a happening of the past. Let the cry of invocation issue forth from the deep centre of the group's clear cold light. Let it evoke response from the bright centre, lying far ahead. When the demand and the response are lost in one great SOUND, move outward from the desert, leave the seas behind and know that God is Fire.

Rule IV

For Applicants: Let the disciple tend the evocation of the fire, nourish the lesser lives and thus keep the wheel revolving.

For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group see that all the eighteen fires die down and that the lesser lives return unto the reservoir of life. This they must bring about through the evocation of the Will. The lesser wheels must not for aye revolve in time and space. Only the greater Wheel must onward move and turn.

Rule V

For Applicants: Let the applicant see to it that the Solar Angel dims the light of the lunar angels, remaining the sole luminary in the microcosmic sky.

For Disciples and Initiates: In unison let the group perceive the Triad shining forth, dimming the light of the soul and blotting out the light of form. The macrocosmic Whole is all there is. Let the group perceive that Whole and then no longer use the thought "My soul and thine."

Rule VI

For Applicants: The purificatory fires burn dim and low when the third is sacrificed to the fourth. Therefore let the disciple refrain from taking life and let him nourish that which is lowest with the produce of the second.

For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group know that life is one and naught can ever take or touch that life. Let the group know the vivid, flaming, drenching Life that floods the fourth when the fifth is known. The fifth feeds on the fourth. Let then the group—merged in the fifth—be nourished by the sixth and seventh and realise that all the lesser rules are rules in time and space and cannot hold the group. It onward moves in life.

Rule VII

For Applicants: Let the disciple turn his attention to the enunciating of those sounds which echo in the hall where walks the Master. Let him not sound the lesser notes which awaken vibration within the halls of Maya.

For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group life emit the Word of invocation and thus evoke response within those distant Ashrams where move the Chohans of the race of men. They are no longer men as are the Masters but having passed beyond that lesser stage, have linked Themselves with the Great Council in the highest Secret Place. Let the group sound a dual chord, reverberating in the halls where move the Masters but finding pause and prolongation within those radiant halls where move the Lights which carry out the Will of God.

Rule VIII

For Applicants: When the disciple nears the Portal, the greater seven must awaken and bring forth response from the lesser seven upon the double circle.

For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group find within itself response to the greater seven groups which carry out the hierarchical will with love and understanding. The group contains all seven, the perfect group. The lesser seven, the greater seven and the planetary seven form one great whole, and these the group must know. When this is realised and the Law of the Supplementary Seven is understood let the group understand the Three and then the ONE. This they can do with the united breath and the unified rhythm.

Rule IX

For Applicants: Let the disciple merge himself within the circle of the other selves. Let but one colour blend them and their unity appear. Only when the group is known and sensed can energy be wisely emanated.

For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group know there are no other selves. Let the group know there is no colour, only light; and then let darkness take the place of light, hiding all difference, blotting out all form. Then—at the place of tension, and at that darkest point—let the group see a point of clear cold fire, and in the fire (right at its very heart) let the One Initiator appear Whose star shone forth when the Door first was passed.

Rule X

For Applicants: The Army of the Voice, the devas in their serried ranks work ceaselessly. Let the disciple apply himself to a consideration of their methods; let him learn the rules whereby the Army works within the veils of maya.

For Disciples and Initiates:  The rules for work within the veils of maya are known and have been used. Let the group widen all the rents within those veils and thus let in the light. Let the Army of the Voice be no more heard and let the brothers onward move within the Sound. Then let them know the meaning of the O.M. and let them hear that O.M. as it is sounded forth by Him Who stands and waits at the very centre of the Council Chamber of the Lord.

Rule XI

For Applicants: Let the disciple transfer the fire from the lower triangle to the higher and preserve that which is created through the fire at the midway point.

For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group together move the fire within the Jewel in the Lotus into the Triad and let them find the Word which will carry out that task. Let them destroy by their dynamic Will that which has been created at the midway point. When the point of tension is reached by the brothers at the fourth great cycle of attainment, then will this work be done.

Rule XII

For Applicants: Let the disciple learn to use the hand in service; let him seek the mark of the Messenger in his feet and let him learn to see with the eye which looks out from between the two.

For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group serve as Aquarius indicates; let Mercury speed the group upon the upward Way and let Taurus bring illumination and the attainment of the vision; let the mark of the Saviour, as the group toils in Pisces, be seen above the aura of the group.

Rule XIII

For Applicants: Four things the disciple must learn and comprehend before he can be shown the inmost mystery: first, the laws of that which radiates; the five meanings of magnetisation make the second; the third is transmutation or the secret lost of alchemy; and lastly, the first letter of the Word which has been imparted, or the hidden name egoic.

For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group get ready to reveal the hidden mystery. Let the group demonstrate the higher meaning of the lessons learnt, and these are four and yet are one. Let the group understand the Law of Synthesis, of unity and fusion; let the threefold mode of working with that which is dynamic carry the group together towards the Higher Three where the Will of God holds sway; let Transfiguration follow Transformation and may Transmutation disappear. Let the O.M. be heard right at the centre of the group, proclaiming God is All.

Rule XIV

For Applicants: Listen, touch, see, apply, know.

For Disciples and Initiates: Know, express, reveal, destroy and resurrect.

These are the rules for group initiation and I am dealing with them to give you a fuller understanding of the Laws of Group Life with which I dealt in some of my other books.

I will take these rules and expound for you somewhat of their meaning and indicate their significances as far as these can be grasped now. These instructions are written for future disciples towards the end of this century. They form part of the last volume of A Treatise on the Seven Rays and will, therefore, go out to the general public who will not understand, but thus the needed teaching will be preserved.

  1. RULE ONE

We now begin our study of the fourteen rules for those who are seeking initiation, in one or other of its degrees. In Initiation, Human and Solar I gave the rules for those proposing to enter the grades of discipleship. I would like for a minute to deal with the significance of the word "Rule" and give you some idea of its occult meaning.

There is much difference between a Law, an Order or Command, and a Rule, and these distinctions should be pondered with care. The Laws of the universe are simply the modes of expression, the life impulses and the way of existence or activity of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being. There is no avoiding these laws in the last analysis, and there is no denying them, for we are eternally swept into activity by them and they govern and control (from the angle of the Eternal Now) all that happens in time and space. Orders and commands are the feeble interpretations which men give to what they understand by law. In time and space, and at any given moment and in any given location, these commands are issued by those who are in a position of authority or who seem to dominate or are in a position to enforce their wishes. Laws are occult and basic. Orders are indicative of human frailty and limitation.

Rules are, however, different. They are the result of tried experience and of age-long undertakings and—assuming neither the form of laws nor the limitations of a command—they are recognised by those for whom they exist and hence evoke from them a prompt intuitive response. They need no enforcement but are voluntarily accepted, and are put to trial in the belief that the witness of the past and the testimony of the ages warrant the effort required for the expressed requirements.

This is true of the fourteen Rules which we are now going to study. I would remind you that only the initiate consciousness will truly comprehend their significance, but also that your effort so to do will develop in you the beginning of that initiate consciousness, provided you seek to make practical and voluntary application of these rules in your daily lives. They are susceptible of three forms of application—physical, emotional and mental—and of a fourth application which is best designated by the words "the response of the integrated personality to soul interpretation and understanding."

Another point which I would call to your attention, prior to interpreting this rule, is that your group endeavour must be to seek group application, group meaning and group light. I would emphatically emphasise the words "group light." We are dealing, therefore, with something basically new in the field of occult teaching, and the difficulty of intelligent comprehension is consequently great. The true significances are not the simple ones which appear upon the surface. The words of these rules would seem to be almost tritely familiar. If they meant exactly what they appear to mean, there would be no need for me to be giving hints as to their underlying significances and ideas. But they are not so simple.

To sum up, therefore: these Rules are to be read with the aid of a developing esoteric sense; they are related to group initiation in spite of their having individual application; they are not what they appear to be on the surface—trite truisms and spiritual platitudes; but they are rules for initiation which, if followed, will take the disciple and the group through a major spiritual experience; they embody the techniques of the New Age, which necessitate group activity, group procedure and united action.

Earlier I said that these rules are the result of tried experience, and my use of the word "new" in this connotation is related to human knowledge but not to the initiatory procedure. That has always existed and always, at the great crises of initiation, disciples have moved forward in groups, even though they have not been aware of so doing. Now disciples can become so aware, and the various ray ashrams will not only present their groups (large or small) to the Initiator, but the personnel of these groups will now be aware of the fact of group presentation. They will also have to grasp the fact of the extent of their knowledge being dependent upon their decentralisation. I would ask you to ponder and reflect upon this last statement.

Rule I

Within the fire of mind, focussed within the head's clear light, let the group stand. The burning ground has done its work. The clear cold light shines forth and cold it is and yet the heat—evoked by the group love—permits the warmth of energetic moving out. Behind the group there stands the Door. Before them opens out the Way. Together let the band of brothers onward move—out of the fire, into the cold, and toward a newer tension.

It will be profitable if we take this Rule I sentence by sentence and try to wrest from each its group significance.

  1. Within the fire of the mind, focussed within the head's clear light, let the group stand.

In this sentence, you have the idea of intellectual perception and of focussed unity. Intellectual perception is not mental understanding, but is in reality the clear cold reason, the buddhic principle in action and the focussed attitude of the Spiritual Triad in relation to the personality. I would call your attention to the following analogies:

Head

Monad

Atma

Purpose

Heart

Soul

Buddhi

Pure reason

Base of spine

Personality

Manas

Spiritual activity

In these words you have, therefore, the position of the personality indicated as it stands at the penetrating point of the antahkarana as it contacts the manas or lower mind and is thus the agent of the purpose of the Monad, working through the Spiritual Triad which is—as you know—related to the personality by the antahkarana.

The heart as an aspect of pure reason requires careful consideration. It is usually considered the organ of pure love but—from the angle of the esoteric sciences—love and reason are synonymous terms, and I would have you reflect upon why this should be. Love is essentially a word for the underlying motive of creation. Motive, however, presupposes purpose leading to action, and hence in the group-life task of the incarnating Monad there comes a time when motive (heart and soul) becomes spiritually obsolete because purpose has reached a point of fulfillment and the activity set in motion is such that purpose cannot be arrested or stopped. The disciple cannot then be deterred, and no hindrance or difficulty is hard enough to prevent his moving forward. Then we have eventual destruction of what Theosophists call the causal body and the establishing of a direct relation between the Monad and its tangible expression upon the physical plane. The head centre and the centre at the base of the spine will be in direct unimpeded relation; monadic will and personality will likewise will be in a similar unimpeded relation, via the antahkarana. I would have you remember that the will aspect is the final dominating principle.

In the group application of these ideas the same basic and profound development must take place, and a group of disciples must be distinguished by pure reason, which will steadily supersede motive, merging eventually into the will aspect of the Monad—its major aspect. It is, technically speaking, Shamballa in direct relation with humanity.

What, therefore, is the group will in any ashram or Master's group? Is it present in any form vital enough to condition the group relations and to unite its members into a band of brothers—moving forward into the light?  Is the spiritual will of the individual personalities of such strength that it negates the personality relation and leads to spiritual recognition, spiritual interplay and spiritual relation? It is only in consideration of these fundamental effects of standing as a group in "the head's clear light" that it is permissible for disciples to bring into the picture personal sensitivities and thought, and this only because of a group temporary limitation.

What is it, therefore, which prevents a disciple—as an individual—from having direct approach and direct contact with the Master without being dependent upon an intermediary? Let me illustrate: In the group I have under training (Discipleship in the New Age, Vols. I and II) two or three have direct approach and others have it but know it not; still others are well intentioned and hard driving disciples, but never for a second do they forget themselves; one has had a problem of glamour but now is preoccupied with the problem of spiritual ambition—a spiritual ambition which is working through a very small personality; some could make rapid progress but are too prone to inertia—perhaps I could say that they do not care enough. Each of them (and every other disciple) can place himself. All of them desire to move forward and possess a strong inner spiritual life—hence my finding the time to work with them. But the group antahkarana is still incomplete and the aspect of pure reason and of the heart does not control. The evocative power of the Spiritual Triad is not, therefore, adequate to hold the personality steady and the invocative power of the personality is non-existent—speaking from the angle of the group personalities which make up the personality aspect of the ashram. This is a factor with which they oft feel I have not to deal. It can only become a potent factor if certain personality relations are adjusted and inertia is overcome. Then and only then can "the group stand."

  1. The burning ground has done its work.

Here there is quite apt to be misunderstanding. To most people the burning ground stands for one of two things:

  1. Either the fire of the mind, burning up those things in the lower nature of which it becomes increasingly aware.

  1. Or the burning ground of sorrow, agony, horror and pain which is the characteristic quality of life in the three worlds, particularly at this time.

But the burning ground referred to here is something very different. When the blazing light of the sun is correctly focussed on or through a glass it can cause ignition.  When the blazing light of the Monad is focussed directly upon the personality, via the antahkarana and not specifically through the soul, it produces a blazing fire which burns up all hindrances in a steady, sequential process. Wording it otherwise, when the will aspect streams from the Monad and focusses through the personal will (as the mind can grasp and realise it) it destroys as by fire all elements of self-will. As the energy of Shamballa streams out and makes a direct contact with humanity (omitting the transmission via the Hierarchy, which has hitherto been customary), you have what has been seen in the world today, a destructive conflagration or a world burning ground. When the antahkarana of a group is rightly constructed, then the individualised group-will will disappear in the full consciousness of the monadic purpose or clear directed will. These are points which the disciple preparing for initiation has to consider as he prepares for the higher initiations, and these are the points which any group or ashram in preparation for initiation has also to consider.

The secret of the higher initiations lies in the trained use of the higher will. It does not lie in purification or in self-discipline or in any of the expedients which have acted in the past as interceptors of the truth. This whole problem of the Shamballic will is in process of revelation, and will eventually alter the entire approach of the disciple in the New Age to initiation. The theme of "the Way into Shamballa" requires reflective study and esoteric understanding. In this concept of the new and future section (if I may so call it) of the Way or Path with which the modern disciple is faced lies the secret of the coming revelation and of the spiritual dispensation which will emerge as humanity constructs the new world civilisation and begins to formulate the new culture. The burning, purifying, destructive effects of the monadic will upon its distorted reflection, the individual will, deeply deserves consideration.

For long, aspirants have noted and have been taught the effect of the will upon the astral, or emotional body. It is one of the primary and most elementary of the initial tensions, and is taught upon the Probationary Path. It leads to the purifying and the re-organising of the entire psychic and emotional life, as the result of its destructive action. "If you will only think," "if you will only use a little will," and "if you will only remember that you have a mind," we say to the children of the race and to beginners upon the Path of conscious Return. Little by little, then, the focus and the orientation shift out of the astral life and from the emotional level of consciousness into the mental, and consequently into the reflection of the world of purpose, found in the three worlds. When that stage has been somewhat developed, then there follows, upon the Path of Discipleship and of preparation for initiation, an effort to grasp and understand the higher aspects of this mental process, and the will aspect of the egoic life begins to influence the disciple. The "petals of sacrifice" unfold and the sacred sacrificial aspect of life is revealed in its beauty, purity, simplicity and in its revolutionising quality.

Upon the Path of Initiation, the monadic will (of which the egoic will is the reflection and the individual self-will is the distortion) is gradually transmitted, via the antahkarana, direct to the man upon the physical plane. This produces the higher correspondence of those qualities so glibly spoken of by the well-trained but dense esotericist—transmutation and transformation. The result is the assimilation of the individual will and the egoic will into the purpose of the Monad which is the purpose—undeviating and unalterable—of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being. This is the field of the true burning, for our "God is a consuming Fire." This is the burning bush or the burning tree of life of Biblical symbolism. This highest of all the fires, this deeply spiritual and hitherto seldom recognised burning-ground, has its effects summed up for us in the next phrase or sentence of Rule I.

  1. The clear cold light shines forth and cold it is and yet the heat—evoked by the group love—

        permits the warmth of energetic moving out.

In these words you have the key to group initiation. The light of the higher initiations can stream in when it is evoked by the group love. That light is clear and cold, but produces the needed "heat," which is a symbolic word used in many of the world Scriptures to express living, spiritual energy. I said "spiritual energy" and not soul force, and herein lies a distinction which you will some day have to grasp.

This group love is based upon the egoic aspect of the will to which we give the name "sacrificial love." This does not connote happy relationships between individual members of the group. It might, presumably, lead to unhappy outer, superficial interplay, but basically it leads to an unalterably staunch loyalty, underlying the surface of the outer life. The Master's influence, as He seeks to aid His disciple, always produces transitory turmoil—transitory from the angle of the soul, but frequently appalling from the angle of the personality.

Similarly, the projection of the life and influence of any senior disciple into the periphery or aura of the aspirant or lesser disciple is—in its degree—likewise disturbing and upsetting; this is a point which should be carefully borne in mind, both as regards the disciple's own reactions and training, and as regards any effect which he may call forth in the life of a probationary disciple or lesser disciple in his own sphere of influence. These intrusive influences and their consequent effects which are produced upon an individual or a group by a Master or a senior disciple are usually interpreted in personality terms, and are very little understood. They are nevertheless aspects of the higher will in some higher disciple and are beating upon the personality will and evoking the sacrificial will of the Ego, and hence lead to a period of temporary discomfort.

This the aspirant and the inexperienced disciple resent and blame the evoking sources for their discomfort, instead of learning the needed lesson of receiving and handling force.

Where, however, real love exists, it will produce the lessening of the personality will, the evocation of the sacrificial egoic will, and a constantly growing capacity to identify the group with the will or purpose of the Monad. The progress of the group is, therefore, from one burning ground to another— each burning ground being colder and clearer than the preceding one but producing sequentially the burning fire, the clear cold lighted fire, and the consuming divine fire.

Thus in parables the truth goes out, and gradually the initiate grasps the uses of heat, warmth, light and energy; he arrives at an understanding of self-will, sacrificial will and Shamballic purpose, and only Love (self-love, group love, and finally, divine love) can reveal the significance of these symbolic words and the occult paradoxes which confront the true aspirant as he attempts to tread the Way.

As we continue our studies of the rules to be followed by those receiving initiate-training, I would remind you of certain things, some of them already touched upon but requiring re-emphasis. Any usefulness which these Rules may have for you will be dependent upon your grasping a few basic ideas and then proceeding to make them factual as far as in you lies.

First, I would call your attention to what should be the basic attitude of the would-be initiate: It should be one of purpose, governed by pure reason and working out in spiritual activity. That is a sentence easily written, but what specifically does it convey to you? Let me enlarge upon it somewhat. The attitude of the initiate-in-training should be one of right spiritual motive—the motive being the intelligent fulfillment of the will aspect of divinity, or of the Monad. This involves the merging of his personality self-will into that of the sacrificial will of the soul; and this, when accomplished, will lead to the revelation of the divine Will. Of this Will, no one who is not an initiate has any conception. It means, secondly, the release of the faculty of spiritual perception and of intuitive understanding, which involves the negation of the activity of the lower or concrete mind, of the lower personal self, and the subordination of the knowledge aspect of the soul to the clear pure light of the divine understanding.

When these two factors are beginning to be active, you will have the emergence of true spiritual activity upon the physical plane, motivated from the high source of the Monad, and implemented by the pure reason of the intuition. It will be apparent to you, therefore, that these higher spiritual faculties can only be brought into play when the bridging antahkarana is beginning to play its part. Hence the teaching which I am giving on the construction of the rainbow bridge.

These Rules are in reality great Formulas of Approach, but they indicate approach to a specific section of the Path and not approach to the Initiator. I would have you reflect upon this distinction. The "Way of the Higher Evolution" lies open to the aspirant to the Greater Mysteries, but he is oft bewildered in the beginning and frequently questions in his mind the difference between the progress or evolution of the personality towards soul consciousness and the nature of the progress which lies ahead and which is essentially different to the unfoldment of pure consciousness.

Have you grasped the fact that after the third initiation, the initiate is not concerned with consciousness at all, but with the fusion of his individual will with the divine will. He is not then occupied with increasing his sensitivity to contact, or with his conscious response to environing conditions, but is becoming increasingly aware of the dynamics of the Science of the Service of the Plan. This distinctive realisation can only come when his fused and blended personality and soul expression of will has disappeared in the blazing light of the divine Purpose—a purpose which cannot be frustrated even if at times delayed, as it has been during the past fifty-five years. (Written in February, 1943.)

Much of what I have said above will seem meaningless to you because the finished contact between soul and personality has not been brought about and the will aspect in manifestation is not yet understood in its three phases: Personality, Egoic and Monadic. But, as I have earlier told you, I write for those disciples and initiates who are now coming into incarnation and who will be in the full flower of their consciousness and service at the latter end of this century. But the effort you make to understand will have its effect, even if the brain registers it not.

In the last analysis, these Rules or Formulas of Approach are primarily concerned with the Shamballa or life aspect.  They are the only Formulas or embodied techniques at present extant which have in them the quality which will enable the aspirant to understand and eventually express the significance of the words of Christ, "Life more abundantly." These words relate to contact with Shamballa; the result will be the expression of the will aspect. The whole process of invocation and evocation is tied up with the idea. The lesser aspect is ever the invoking factor, and this constitutes an unalterable law lying behind the entire evolutionary process. It is necessarily a reciprocal process, but in time and space it might be broadly said that the lesser ever invokes the higher, and higher factors are then evoked and respond according to the measure of understanding and the dynamic tension displayed by the invoking element. This many fail to realise. You do not work at the evocative process. That word simply connotes the response of that which has been reached. The task of the lesser aspect or group is invocative, and the success of the invocative rite is called evocation.

When, therefore, your life is fundamentally invocative, then there will come the evocation of the will. It is only truly invocative when personality and soul are fused and functioning as a consciously blended and focussed unit.

The next point which I seek to make is that these Formulas of Approach or Rules deal with the unfoldment of group consciousness, because it is only in group formation that, as yet, the Shamballa force of the will can be tapped. They are useless to the individual under the new initiatory dispensation. Only the group, under the proposed new mode of working and of group initiation, is capable of invoking Shamballa. That is why Hitler, the exponent of the reversed reaction to Shamballa (and consequently the evil reaction) had to gather around him a group of like-minded people or personalities. On the upper arc of the evocative cycle (Hitler being the expression of the invocative arc of the Shamballa force) it requires a group to bring about evocation.

We now come to my third point in relation to the Rules or Formulas and their objective. They are concerned—above everything else—with group initiation. They have other applications, but for the present here lies their usefulness. What, you may ask, is group initiation? Does it involve the taking of initiation by every member in the group? Can one person have so extensive an influence that he can hold up or delay or even prevent (in time and space) the group initiation? The group need not necessarily contain members who have all taken the same initiation. By this I mean that the necessary initiation of all the members simultaneously into the same group development is not required.

Basically, what I am endeavouring to say anent these Rules has relation to the third initiation—the initiation of the integrated personality. They necessarily, however, have a correspondence to the second initiation, and are consequently of more general interest, for it is that initiation which faces so many aspirants today—the demonstration of the control of the formidable emotional nature.

I would ask you to think much about this point which I have just made. Group initiation means that the bulk of the members are correctly oriented; that they are proposing to accept the discipline which will prepare them for the next great expansion of consciousness, and that none of them can possibly be deviated from their purpose (note that word with its first ray or Shamballic implications), no matter what is happening in their environment or their personal life. You need to reflect on this if you desire to make the needed progress.

In these short instructions, which aim only at a "tentative indication" (note that phrase), it is not necessary to enter into explicit details. In any case, if the Formulas or Rules are not intuitively clear to your minds, anything I could say would only hinder and frustrate my purpose.

Finally, these Formulas or Rules are susceptible of three forms of application or interpretation and I would have you remember this, because you can thereby discover where your individual focus of attention is and if you are consequently functioning as an integrated personality. Remember always that only an integrated personality can achieve the needed soul focus. This is a fundamental requirement. These three forms of application are physical, emotional and mental in nature. But those words in their simplest connotation have true reference to the task of achieving one or other of the higher initiations. The only way their significance can truly appear is by grasping the following meanings:

  1. The physical application refers to the usage by the group of the given knowledge and intuitively perceived information in such a way that the needs of the larger group, of which the group itself is a part, are constructively served. The consummation of this ideal is to be found in the activity of the Hierarchy itself which, from progressive point to progressive point, finds itself in the position of intuitive interpreter and force transmitter between the centre of Shamballa and Humanity. The individual initiate, on the way to one or other of the higher initiations, has in his lesser degree to achieve the same dual function and thereby fit himself for the wider cooperation.

  1. The emotional application has definite reference to the world of meaning, interpreted in a group sense. At present, well-meaning aspirants are satisfied if they are able to interpret their personality conditions, events and happenings in terms of their real meaning. But that still remains an individual reaction. The aspirant who is seeking to comprehend these Rules is more interested in seeing the situations which he contacts in terms of a world whole, and in searching for their meaning in terms of their group significance. This serves to decentralise him and to convey into his consciousness some aspect of that larger whole, and this in its turn contributes to the expansion of the consciousness of humanity as a whole.

  1. The mental application has to be grasped and considered in terms of the "great light." It must be remembered that the mind is the organ of illumination. Therefore it might be asked: Do the united mental processes of the group as a whole tend to throw light on human problems and situations? How much does the light of the individual group member aid in this process? How much light do you, as an individual, register and therefore contribute to the greater light? Is the group light a dim flicker or a blazing sun?

Such are some of the implications lying behind the use of these familiar words, and the careful consideration of their meaning might bring about a definite expansion of consciousness. This expansion normally follows certain clear and definite stages:

  1. A recognition of the goal. This goal is often expressed under the word "the door." A door permits entrance into some place larger than the area covered by the standing room of the would-be initiate. This statement refers to the "door of incarnation" through which the incarnating soul enters into life— limited and restricted from the angle of the soul. The door of initiation admits "into a larger room" or sphere of extended expression.

  1. The approach, under regulated and imposed and well-tried rules, of the entering one towards a visioned goal. This involves conformity to that which has been tried, known and demonstrated by all previous initiates.

  1. The arresting of the steps of the initiate before the door in order that he may "prove himself to be initiate" prior to entry.

  1. The passing of certain tests in order to demonstrate fitness.

  1. Then comes the stage of entrance—under due and set rules and yet with full freedom of action. You will see, therefore, why ever the need for understanding is emphasised.

Before proceeding to study the final phrases of Rule One, I would call your attention to the fact that the initiate has faced two major tests, symbolically described as "the burning ground" and the "clear cold light." Only after he has successfully passed these can he—or the group, when considering group initiation—move forward and outward into the wider reaches of the divine consciousness. These tests are applied when the soul grips the personality and the fire of divine love destroys the loves and desires of the integrated personality. Two factors tend to bring this about: the slow moving forward of the innate conscience into greater control, and the steady development of the "fiery aspiration" to which Patanjali makes reference. These two factors, when brought into living activity, bring the disciple into the centre of the burning ground which separates the Angel of the Presence from the Dweller on the Threshold. The burning ground is found upon the threshold of every new advance, until the third initiation has been taken.

The "clear cold light" is the light of pure reason, of infallible intuitive perception and its unremitting, intensive and revealing light constitutes a major test in its effects. The initiate discovers the depths of evil, and at the same time is enticed forward by the heights of a growing sense of divinity. The clear cold light reveals two things:

  1. The omnipresence of God throughout nature, and therefore throughout the entire personality life of the initiate or of the initiate group. The scales fall from the eyes, bringing about—paradoxically—the "dark night of the soul" and the sense of being alone and bereft of all help. This led (in the case of the Christ, for instance) to that appalling moment in the Garden of Gethsemane, and which was consummated on the Cross, when the will of personality-soul clashed with the divine will of the Monad. The revelation to the initiate of the ages of severance from the Central Reality, and of all its attendant implications, descends upon the one who is attempting to stand "in isolated Unity," as Patanjali (to quote him a second time) calls the experience.

The omnipresence of divinity within all forms pours in upon the consciousness of the initiate, and the mystery of time, space and electricity stands revealed. The major effect of this revelation (prior to the third initiation) is to bring to the disciple a realisation of the "great heresy of separateness," as it focusses in him, the separated fully conscious individual—aware of his past, conscious now of his ray and its conditioning power, focussed in his own aspiration, and yet part of the great whole of nature.

From that moment onward he knows that divinity is all there is, and this he learns through the revelation of the inherent separativeness of the form life, through the processes of "the dark night of the soul" and its culminating lesson of the significance of isolation and the freeing process which brings about the merging into unity through the emission of the sound, the cry, the invocation, such as the cry of the Christ upon the Cross symbolised. His exact words have not been transmitted to us. They vary for each ray, but all bring about the recognition of divine merging, in which all separating veils are "rent from the top to the bottom" as The New Testament expresses it.

  1. The omniscience of the divine Whole is also brought home to the initiate through the medium of the clear cold light, and the phases of "isolated experience," as it is sometimes occultly called, is forever ended. I would have you realise what this can mean in so far as possible to your present consciousness. Up till the present, the initiate-disciple has been functioning as a duality and as a fusion of soul-energy and personality-force. Now these forms of life stand exposed to him for what they essentially are, and he knows that—as directing agencies and as transitory gods—they no longer have any hold over him. He is being gradually translated into another divine aspect, taking with him all that he has received during the ages of close relation and identification with the third aspect, form, and the second aspect, consciousness. A sense of being bereft, deserted and alone descends upon him as he realises that the control of form and soul must also disappear. Here lies the agony of isolation and the overpowering sense of loneliness. But the truths revealed by the clear cold light of the divine reason leave him no choice. He must relinquish all that holds him away from the Central Reality; he must gain life and "life more abundantly." This constitutes the supreme test in the life cycle of the incarnating Monad; and "when the very heart of this experience enters into the heart of the initiate, then he moves outward through that heart into full life expression." Such is the way that the Old Commentary expresses this. I know no other way in which to bring the idea before you. The experience undergone is not related to form, nor is it connected with consciousness or with even the higher psychic sensitivity. It consists of pure identification with divine purpose. This is made possible because the self-will of the personality and the enlightened will of the soul have both equally been relinquished.

  1. Behind the group there stands the Door.  Before them opens out the Way.

Note how this passage reverses the usual presentation. Hitherto, in the occult books, the Door of Initiation has been presented as ever moving forward ahead of the initiate. He passes through door after door into a wider experience and expansion of consciousness. But in the initiate consciousness, after the first two initiations, this is not the realisation. It is simply the adhering to an old form of symbolism with the implied limitations of the truth. I would here remind you that the third initiation is regarded by the Hierarchy as the first major initiation, and that the first and second initiations are initiations of the Threshold. For the bulk of humanity, these first two initiations will for a very long time constitute major initiatory experiences, but in the life and realisation of the initiate-soul, they are not. After the two initiations of the threshold have been undergone the attitude of the initiate changes and he sees possibilities and factors and revelations which have hitherto been totally unrealised and unknown, even to his consciousness at his highest moments.

The door of initiation looms large in the consciousness of the neophyte; the higher Way is the determining factor in the life of the initiate of the third degree. It is the Transfiguration; and a new glory pours through the transfigured initiate who has been released from every type of grip by either the personality or the soul. For the first time, the goal of the higher Way and the attainment of Nirvana (as the Oriental calls it) appears before him, and he knows that no forms and no spiritual complexes and no pull by either soul or form, or by both united, can have any effect upon his attaining his final destination.

I would like for a moment to refer here to the door symbology as the initiate begins to grasp the inner meaning of those simple words. For long the teaching, given in the clear cold light, anent the door and the emphasis put upon the presentation of the door lying ahead of the aspirant has been made familiar, but that has been working with the lower aspects of the symbolism, even if aspirants did not realise it; they have been taught the fact of the light in the head, which is the personality correspondence to the clear cold light to which I refer. At the very centre of that light, as many aspirants know theoretically or factually by inconstant experience, is a centre or point of dark indigo blue—midnight blue. Note the significance of this in view of what I have been saying anent the "dark night," the midnight hour, the zero hour in the life of the soul. That centre is in reality an opening, a door leading somewhere, a way of escape, a place through which the soul imprisoned in the body can emerge and pass into higher states of consciousness, untrammelled by form limitations; it has also been called "the funnel or the channel for the sound"; it has been named the "trumpet through which the escaping A.U.M. can pass." The ability to use this door or channel is brought about by the practice of alignment; hence the emphasis laid upon this exercise in the attempt to train aspirants and disciples.

Once alignment has been achieved, it will be realised (remembering the symbolism of the head, the light and the central opening) that many occasions arise in meditation when "behind the group there stands the door; before them opens out the Way." This is the lower correspondence of the higher initiate-experience with which our rule is dealing.

Again, this time in relation to the soul, comes the repetition of the discovery of the Door, its use and its appearance, finally, behind the initiate. This time the door must be found upon the mental plane, and not as earlier upon the etheric level; this is brought about by the aid of the soul and of the lower mind and through the revealing power of the clear cold light of the reason. When discovered, the "revelation of a terrible though beautiful experiment" faces the initiate. He finds that this time alignment is not his need, but the definite undertaking of a creative work—the building of a bridge between the door which lies behind and the door which lies ahead. This involves the construction of what is technically the antahkarana, the rainbow bridge. This is built by the disciple-in-training upon the basis of his past experience; it is anchored in the past and firmly grounded in the highest, rightly oriented aspect of the personality. As the disciple then creatively works, he finds that there is a reciprocal action on the part of the Presence, the Monad—the unity which stands behind the Door. He discovers that one span of the bridge (if I might so call it) is being built or pushed forward from the other side of the gulf separating him from experience in the life of the Spiritual Triad. This Spiritual Triad is essentially, to the initiate, what the threefold personality is to the man in physical incarnation.

I wonder if I have succeeded in giving you at least a general idea of the possibilities lying ahead of the disciple, and incited you to definite conscious response to those possibilities. I cannot do other than speak in terms of consciousness, even though the life of the Triad—leading in its turn to identification with the Monad, as the personality life leads eventually to soul control and expression—has naught to do with consciousness or sensitivity as those terms are commonly understood. Yet remember how, in all my teachings upon occult unfoldment, I have used the word IDENTIFICATION. This is the only word I have found which can in any way convey the complete unity which is finally achieved by those who develop a sense of unity, and who refuse to accept isolation; separateness then fades out entirely. The isolated unity achieved is unity with the Whole, with Being in its totality (and this cannot as yet convey much to you).

  1. Together let the band of brothers onward move; out of the fire, into the cold, and toward a

        newer tension.

Here, in very brief form, certain basic instructions are given. Each of them indicates the new attitudes imposed upon all who have taken initiation. They cannot be interpreted in terms of the Path of Discipleship or of Probation. The ordinary and easily-arrived-at significances mean little to the initiate mind. Let me briefly consider them so that clarity of concept, though not of detail, may prevail.

  1. Out of the fire. This is a symbolic way of indicating that the personality life is definitely and finally left behind. It is this phrase which gives the clue to the initiation which is referred to in this Rule.

Each of these Rules contains within itself the clue to the particular initiation to which reference is being made. The Rules are not placed in their right order, having sequential reference to the seven initiations. The intuition of the aspirant must be invoked if he is to arrive at right knowledge. I shall sometimes indicate the initiation involved, but not always, as it would profit not. The clue to the seventh initiation which lies ahead for such high Beings as the Christ would be of no service to you at all. The clue to the initiation of the Transfiguration can be of importance, as it involves the personality, and many of you in the not so distant future (from the angle of the aeonial life cycle of the soul) will face that.  The secret of the third initiation is the demonstration of complete freedom from the claims and demands of the personality. It does not involve the achievement of a completely perfect expression of the spiritual life, but it does indicate that the service of the initiate and his life demonstration—regarded in a broad and general way, from the angle of the life-tendency and of entire dedication to humanity—remains untouched by the limitations, still existent, of the personal lower self.

  1. Into the cold. This means that the focus of the life is now in the realm of clear truth and of pure reason. The life of the initiate is being rapidly transferred out of the egoic centre, the soul vehicle, on to the level of the buddhic life or state of being. Note, I do not say "of consciousness." This is formless, but preserves the fruitage of form experience. It is being oriented towards a realised unity and identification with the life aspect of divinity, and yet preserves its own recognised and achieved identity. On this level of pure impersonality and of right orientation the group stands, obedient to the rule which governs this particular stage of development.

  1. Toward a newer tension. The interpretation of the phrase presents difficulty. This is owing to the false impression which the word "tension" conveys at this time. It is associated in the minds of the reading public with the thought of nerves, with points of crisis, with courage and with fatigue. Is this not so? But in reality tension, occultly understood, is not associated with these aspects of personality reaction at all. The esoteric significance of tension (as far as I can explain it by limiting words) is "focussed immovable Will." Right tension is the identification of brain and soul with the will aspect, and the preservation of that identification—unchanged and immovable—no matter what the circumstances and the difficulties.

You can see, therefore, how far ahead of present attitudes and goals this teaching is. Identification with the soul and with the Hierarchy is dependent upon the ability of the disciple rightly to love. It is the emergence of the second divine aspect, for love is the expression of group life, and that is rare indeed to find in these days. Right tension indicates the emergence of the first aspect, of the will, and this is seldom to be found as yet, save among the more advanced disciples and initiate members of the Hierarchy.

  1. Love governs the Way into the life of the Hierarchy and is the foundation for all approach to, and appreciation and acceptance of truth.

  1. Will governs the Way into Shamballa and is the foundation for all approach to, appreciation of and identification with, Being.

This developed will expresses itself as tension, esoterically understood. It embodies the ideas of orientation, implacable determination, ability to wait and to preserve intention and orientation unmoved by aught which may occur. It also involves the determination to take the intended action (always of a creative nature and based on loving understanding) at the psychological moment (right timing), or that exact moment which the psyche or soul determines to be correct. Here you have one of the interesting transferences of meaning and of relationship which occur in the Ageless Wisdom. The Son or soul emerges into manifestation with the concurrence and aid of the Mother or of the matter aspect. This is to you a most familiar truth. In the next stage, that of initiate-development, the Son, in its turn, becomes the feminine or negative aspect and, demonstrating as the Psyche, enables the initiate to bring into expression another divine aspect—that of the will. Until the fourth initiation is undergone, it is the soul as a "focal point for descending light and for ascending radiance." This dual activity reveals the nature of the will. Note how this phrase from an ancient writing describes the antahkarana.

It is not possible in these brief instructions to deal adequately with the will aspect of divinity, nor would it profit at this time. Aspirants have to learn the nature of the will by the power of inner illumination and by certain intelligent recognitions. They learn the nature of the self through the aid of the personality, the shadow or distortion of the divine will. They pass from the expression of the will which is purely selfish, self-sufficient and self-focussed, to the grasp of the group will and to the effort to embody that group will. This group will is always concerned with that which is not the will of the separated self.

As this ability to be selflessly decentralised grows and develops, the aspirant reaches a point where the group life and the group good is seen as an integral part of a much greater Whole. This greater Whole is Being Itself, divorced from form but ever working through form whilst in manifestation, and working with planned purpose. The realisation then grows that intelligence and love are not enough, but that they must be supplemented and implemented by will, which is active intelligent purpose, lovingly applied.

The difficulty of this subject is inherent in the fact that basically (no matter how strange this may seem) love is the line of least resistance for the developed human being. It is the governing principle of the present solar system. Will is the governing principle of the next or coming solar system, which will be brought into manifestation through the agency of those human beings who—in this solar system— arrive at the full expression of the will aspect. Then, in the coming consummating manifestation, love will be to the will aspect what intelligence is, in this solar system, to love.

  1. RULE TWO

In our study of Rule One on Initiation, we gained, or perhaps fixed more clearly in our minds, three major thoughts:

  1. That the Path of Initiation is one on which we develop the Will aspect of divinity.

  1. We learn also to use consciousness as a jumping off place for the recognition of a new state of realisation, which is not consciousness at all, as we understand that term.

  1. We undergo, prior to each initiation, two major tests—that of the burning ground and that of the clear cold light.

We closed our discussion with the thought of Tension and I defined it as the identification of the brain and soul with the will aspect and the preservation of that identification—unchanged and immovable— in all circumstances and difficulties. I mention this as the "tension" concept or point of attainment underlies the teaching of the rule which we are now going to consider.

Rule II

The WORD has now gone forth from the great point of tension: Accepted as a group. Withdraw not now your application. You could not, if you would; but add to it three great demands and forward move. Let there be no recollection and yet let memory rule. Work from the point of all that is within the content of the group's united life.

A close analysis of this rule will convey to the intuition far more than appears upon the surface, and that is rich enough. Each of these rules holds in it the seed of that understanding which must be evoked before the next rule can be mastered. All that is given is ever based on that which has gone before. The "three great demands" of the initiate are based upon the "triple call" found in Rule Two for aspirants and disciples. The triple call was earlier sounded forth. Now its higher significances must be comprehended.

There are only four parts to this rule, which is one of prime importance because it contains the motivating force, the conditioning factors and the place of triumph—all these are indicated.  We will, as is our usual custom, study each separate part sequentially and as far as possible in detail bearing in mind that initiation deals with factors in latent manifestation for which our languages have no words, and with ideas which are not yet to be found among the "raincloud of knowable things" (as Patanjali calls it)—that is, knowable to the masses of men. The initiate is, however, dealing with a world of meaning and of affairs which are not yet manifesting in any way. The task of the Master (and of Those higher than He) is to take those steps and precipitate those "waiting events" which will eventually bring them into manifestation. This, I would remind you, is always done by the use of the will and from a point of tension.

1. The Word has now gone forth from the great point of tension: Accepted as a group.

I would like here to call your attention to the progressive nature of the esoteric science; it is nowhere better illustrated than in this phrase; nowhere is it more clearly shown and yet, unless the intuition and the sense of correlation are functioning, the idea might escape recognition.

In all the teaching given to the aspirant and to the disciple in the early stages of their training, the emphasis has been upon the "point of light" which must be discovered, brought into full illumination, and then so used that the one in whom the light shines becomes a light-bearer in a dark world. This, the aspirant is taught, becomes possible when contact with the soul has been made and the light is found. This is familiar teaching to many and is the essence of the progress to be made by aspirants and disciples in the first part of their training.


We now, however, pass on to another expression and to the next development in the life of the initiate, which is learning to work from a "point of tension." Here lies the new emphasis, and I am bringing it to the attention of humanity as mankind nears the close, the terrible but liberating finale, of his great test in this modern burning-ground. Now men can pass on into the clear cold light, and from there begin to hold that point of tension which will be evocative of the needed "understanding will-to-move forward" along the line of human will-to-good—the first phase of the development of the will aspect. It is the higher sublimation of the aspirational stage which precedes the attainment of the "point of light" through contact with the soul.

The point of tension is found when the dedicated will of the personality is brought into touch with the will of the Spiritual Triad. This takes place in three clearly defined stages:

  1. The stage wherein the lower will aspect which is focussed in the mental body—the will-to-activity of the personality—is brought into contact with the higher abstract mind; this latter is the interpreting agent for the Monad and the lowest aspect of the Triad. Two things can be noted in this respect:

  1.    This contact becomes possible from the moment that the first thin strand of the antahkarana, the rainbow bridge, is completed between the mental unit and the manasic permanent atom.

  1. This demonstrates in an absorbing devotion to the Plan and is an effort, at any cost, to serve that Plan as it is progressively understood and grasped.

This expresses itself in the cultivation of goodwill, as understood by the average intelligent human being and put into action as a way of life.

  1. The stage wherein the love aspect of the soul is brought into touch with the corresponding aspect of the Triad, to which we give the inadequate name of the intuition. This is in reality divine insight and comprehension, as expressed through the formulation of ideas. Here you have an instance of the inadequacy of modern language; ideas are formless and are in effect points of energy, outward moving in order eventually to express some "intention" of the divine creating Logos. When the initiate grasps this and identifies himself with it, his goodwill expands into the will-to-good. Plan and quality give place to purpose and method. Plans are fallible and tentative and serve a temporary need. Purpose, as expressed by the initiate is permanent, farsighted, unalterable, and serves the Eternal Idea.

  1. The stage wherein—after the fourth initiation—there is direct unbroken relation between the Monad, via the Triad, and the form which the Master is using to do His work among men. This form may be either His temporary personality, arrived at along the normal lines of incarnation, or the specially created form to which Theosophists give the technical but cumbersome word "mayavirupa." It is the "true mask, hiding the radiant light and the dynamic energy of a revealed Son of God." This is the esoteric definition which I offer you. This stage can be called the attainment of the will-to-be, not Being as an individual expression but Being as an expression of the Whole—all-inclusive, nonseparative, motivated by goodness, beauty and truth and intelligently expressed as pure love.

All these stages are achieved by the attainment of one point of tension after another, and the work thus carried forward into the realm of the dynamic steadfast will. This will, as it is progressively developed, works ever from a constant point of tension.

We come now to the consideration of a subject which always proves exceedingly difficult to students: The nature of the WORD, the A.U.M., and its later developments, the O.M. and the Sound. Much confusion exists as to its significance or the necessity for its use. The phase of its recognition through which we are now passing is a purely exoteric one of accustoming the general public to the fact of its existence. This has been brought about in three ways:

  1. Through the constant use in all the Christian Churches of the word "Amen," which is a western corruption of the A.U.M. The A.U.M. is here the lowest aspect of the originating Sound.

  1. Through the emphasis laid in Masonry upon the Lost Word, thus subtly drawing the attention of humanity to the O.M., the Sound of the second aspect, the Soul.

  1. Through the growing emphasis laid by the many occult groups throughout the world upon the use of the O.M., its frequent use by these groups in public, and by those intent upon meditation.

The soundest approach is that of the Masonic tradition, because it deals primarily with the world of meaning and with a phase of the esoteric teaching. The use of the Amen in the ritual of the Christian Church will eventually be discouraged, because it is basically a materialistic affirmation, being usually regarded by the average churchgoer as setting the seal of divine approval upon his demand to the Almighty for protection, or for the supply of his physical necessities; all this is, therefore, related to the life of desire, of aspiration, of dualism and of request. It involves the attitude of giver and recipient.

The A.U.M. and the Amen are both of them an expression in sound of the principle of active intelligent substance in the divine manifestation, the third aspect, and have served human need in that phase of material and form development. I refer here also to the development of mind or of the mental form.

The personality as a whole, when perfected and brought under control of the soul, is the "Word made flesh."

The mass of aspirants and of disciples are today learning the meaning of the O.M., which is not the Word made flesh, but the Word released from form, and expressing itself as soul-spirit and not as body-soul-spirit. It might, therefore, be said that:

  1. The A.U.M. (note that I separate each aspect of this triple sound) brings the soul-spirit aspect down on to the physical plane and anchors it there by the force of its outgoing vibration. Using a symbol to make my meaning clear, it is like "a strong wind that pins a man against a wall and makes free effort difficult." It vivifies form; it intensifies the hold of matter upon the soul; it builds around the soul a confining prison—a prison of the senses. It is the "sound of enchantment," the sound that is the source of glamour and of maya; it is the great beguiling and deceptive energy, the note of the involutionary arc. In it are hid the secret of evil or matter, the uses of form, first as a prison, then as a training ground and as a field of experience, and finally as the expression for the manifestation of a Son of God.

  1. The O.M. rightly sounded, releases the soul from the realm of glamour and of enchantment. It is the sound of liberation, the great note of resurrection and of the raising of humanity to the Secret Place of the Most High when all other Words and sounds have failed. It is not a triple sound as is the A.U.M., but a dual sound, significant of the relation of spirit and soul, and of life and consciousness. This lost Word, symbolic of the loss in the three worlds (typified by the degrees of the Blue Lodges in Masonry) must be recovered and is in process of discovery today. The mystics have sought after it; the Masons have preserved the tradition of its existence; the disciples and initiates of the world must demonstrate its possession.

  1. The SOUND is the sole expression of the Ineffable Name, the secret appellation of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being, and Who is known to the Great White Lodge through this name. Remember always that name and form are synonymous terms in the occult teaching, and these two words hold the secret of manifestation. The goal of the initiate is identification with all forms of the divine life, so that he can know himself to be an integral part of that Whole and can tune in on all states of divine awareness, knowing for himself (and not just theoretically) that they are also his own states of awareness. He can then penetrate into the divine arcana of knowledge, share in the divine omnipresence and—at will—express the divine omniscience and prepare himself to manifest in full consciousness the divine omnipotence.

I am using words which are futile to convey the underlying meaning of the Word. Understanding can only be arrived at when a man lives the Word, hearing its soundless Sound and breathing it forth in a vital life-giving breath to others.

The masses are hearing the sound of the A.U.M. and, in their higher brackets, are finding that A.U.M. the expression of something from which they seek release. The aspirants and disciples of the World are hearing the O.M. and in their personal lives the A.U.M. and the O.M. are in conflict. This may represent a new idea to you, but it conveys an idea of an eternal fact. It may help you to gain an understanding of this phase if I point out for you that for this first group the O.M. can be portrayed in the following symbol as expressing the material M nature whereas the second group can be portrayed by the symbol m expressive of the soul enveloped in matter. You will see, therefore, how the teaching leads man progressively onward and how the occult science brings man in touch with great mental reversals and divine paradoxes. For aeons the Word of the soul and the Sound of spiritual reality are lost. Today, the Word of the soul is being found again, and with that finding the little self is lost in the glory and the radiance of the divine Self.

This discovery is consummated at the time of the third initiation. The initiate and the Master, along with those of higher rank who are approaching identification with Shamballa, are steadily and ever more clearly hearing the Sound emanating from the Central Spiritual Sun and penetrating all forms of divine life upon our planet—via our Planetary Logos Who hears it with clarity and with understanding—the Sound of the lowest syllable of the Ineffable Name of the One in Whom all the Planetary Logoi live and move and have Their Being, for They are centres in the LIFE which is expressing itself through the medium of a solar system.

You can see how little use there is in my enlarging further upon this. Its sole usefulness is to give an expanding impulse to the consciousness of the disciple and to stir his imagination (the seed of the intuition), so that even whilst occupied in expressing the M and then the m, he will be reaching out after the Sound.

Earlier I pointed out that the sound of the A.U.M., the sound of the O.M. and the SOUND itself are all related to vibration and to its differing and varied effects. The secret of the Law of Vibration is progressively revealed as people learn to sound forth the Word in its three aspects. Students would also do well to ponder on the distinction between the breath and the Sound, between the process of breathing and of creating directed vibratory activity. The one is related to Time and the other to Space and they are distinct from each other; and "the Sound, the final and yet initiating Sound, concerns that which is neither Time nor Space; it lies outside the manifested ALL, the Source of all that is and yet is naught." 

There are, therefore, great points of tension from which the Sacred Word, in its major aspects, goes forth. Let me list them for you:

  1. The creative point of tension—a tension achieved by a planetary Logos when He responds to the Sound of the Ineffable Name and breathes it forth in His turn in three great Sounds which made one Sound on His Own plane of expression, thus creating the manifested world, the impulse towards the unfoldment of consciousness, and the influence of life itself. This is the Sound.

  1. Seven points of tension on the downward or involutionary arc; these produce the seven planets, the seven states of consciousness, and the expression of the seven ray impulses. This constitutes the sevenfold A.U.M. of which the Ageless Wisdom takes note. It is related to the effect of spirit or life upon substance, thus originating form and creating the prison of the divine life.

  1. The A.U.M. itself or the Word made flesh; this creates finally a point of tension in the fourth kingdom in nature, at which point the evolutionary cycle becomes possible and the first dim note of  the O.M. can be faintly heard. In the individual man this point is reached when the personality is an integrated and functioning whole and the soul is beginning to control it. It is an accumulative tension arrived at through many lives. This process is expressed in the Masters' Archives as:

You must remember that these symbols are an attempt on my part to translate ancient signatures in modern occidental type. The only one which is the same in all languages is, esoterically, the A.U.M.

  1. Then comes a point of tension from which the man eventually achieves liberation from the three worlds and stands as a free soul; he is then a point within the circle—the point indicating the point of tension from which he now works, and the circle the sphere of his self-initiated activity.

I need not carry the story further; from tension to tension the initiate passes just as do all human beings, aspirants, disciples and the lower grades of initiates; from one expansion of consciousness to another they go until the third initiation is undergone and points of tension (qualified by intension and purpose) supersede all previous efforts and the will aspect begins to control.

Here, briefly, is a fresh slant upon the familiar theme of the Word—a theme preserved in some form by all the world religions but a theme which, like all else, has been so materialised that it is the task of the Hierarchy to restore the knowledge of its meaning, of its threefold application and its involutionary and evolutionary significances. Students would do well to remember that its sounding forth vocally upon the physical plane means little. The important factors are to sound it silently, inaudibly and within the head; then, having done so, to hear it reverberate there and to recognise that this self-initiated Sound— breathed forth from a point of tension—is a part of the original SOUND as it takes form as a Word.

When a man perfectly empresses the A.U.M., he can then sound the O.M. with effectiveness from progressive points of tension, until the third initiation. Then the effect of the O.M. is such that the personality as a separate identity disappears, the soul emerges in all its glory, and the first faint sound of the originating SOUND breaks upon the ear of the transfigured initiate. This is the Voice referred to in the Biblical account of the Transfiguration. This Voice says, "This is my beloved Son." The initiate registers the fact that he has been accepted by Shamballa and has made his first contact with the Planetary Logos, the Hierophant, the Initiator at the third initiation, just as the Christ, the Master of all the Masters, is the Initiator and the Hierophant at the first two initiations.

The Word, however, with which we are now dealing is not the Sacred Word itself, but a signal or sound of acceptance. It is translated in this Rule by the phrase:  Accepted as a group.  This refers to aggregates and blended combinations through which the Soul in relation to personalities, the Monad in relation to the Spiritual Triad, the Master in relation to His Ashram, and Shamballa in relation to the Hierarchy, can work, expressing plan in the initial stages of contact, and purpose in the final stages.

Bear in mind that the analogy holds true all the way through. A personality is an aggregate of forms and of substantial lives which, when fused and blended, present a unified sumtotal, animated by desire or aspiration, by plan or purpose, and functioning in its place under the inspiration of a self-initiated inner programme. Progress, from the larger angle and from the standpoint of Those Who see life in terms of ever enlarging Wholes, is from group to group.

This pronouncement, issuing from a point of tension, is the Word of the soul as it integrates with the threefold personality when that personality is consciously ready for such a fusion. The hold of the soul upon its instruments of expression, the network of the seven centres and the subsidiary centres, becomes intensified and energy pours in, forcing the acquiescent personality fully to express the ray type of the soul, and therefore subordinating the ray of the personality (and its three subsidiary rays) to the dominating soul energy. This first great integration is a fusion of force with energy. Here is a statement of deep import, embodying one of the first lessons an initiate has to master. It is one which can only be properly comprehended through life experience, subject to interpretation in the world of meaning. Some understanding of what this implies will come as the disciple masters the distinction between soul activity and the action of matter, between emotion and love, between the intelligent will and the mind, between plan and purpose. In so doing he acquires the capacity to find his point of tension at any given moment, and this growing capacity eventually brings him consciously to recognise group after group as units with which identification must be sought.

He finds his soul through the fusion of soul and personality; he finds his group through the absorption of this fusing soul-form with a Master's group, and finally he is absorbed into the Master's Ashram; there he, in concert with his group brothers in that Ashram, is fused and blended with the Hierarchy and hears the extension of the Word, spoken originally by his soul:  Accepted as a group.  Later, much later, he participates at that august recognition which comes when the Voice issues forth—as annually it does—from the centre at Shamballa and the seal is set on the acceptance of the Hierarchy, with all its new associates, by the Lord of the World. This acceptance involves those initiates of the third degree who have been integrated more closely into the hierarchical life than ever before. This is the signal to them (and to their Seniors Who have heard it year after year) that they are part of the instrument whose purpose is to fulfill the plan.  Thus the great syntheses are slowly taking place.  It has taken many aeons, for evolution (especially in the earlier stages) moves slowly.

In the post-war period and when the new structure of the coming world order is taking shape, the process will be speeded considerably; this will not, however, be for a hundred years, which is but a brief moment in the eternal history of humanity. From synthesis to synthesis the life of God passes. First the synthesis of the atomic lives into ever more perfect forms until the three kingdoms of nature appear; then the synthesis in consciousness, enabling the human being to enter into the larger awareness of the Whole and finally to enter into that mysterious event which is the result of the effect of all preceding developments and to which we give the name of Identification. From the first identification, which is the higher correspondence of the stage of individualisation, progressive absorption into ever larger wholes takes place, and each time the Word goes forth: Accepted as a group.

Have I succeeded in giving you a somewhat wider vision of the significance of initiation in these brief expositions? Do you see more clearly the growing beauty of the Whole and the goodness of the Purpose and the wisdom of the Plan? Do you realise more deeply that beauty, goodness and wisdom are not qualities, as their inadequate nomenclature would imply, but are great facts in manifestation? Do you grasp the truth that they are not descriptive of Deity but are the names of Lives of a potency and activity of which men can as yet know nothing?

Some understanding of this must slowly seep into the mind and consciousness of each disciple as that mind becomes irradiated by soul light in the earlier stages, and later responds to the impact of energy coming from the Spiritual Triad. Only when this is visioned, even if not understood, will the realisation come to the struggling disciple that the words, Withdraw not now your application. You could not if you would; but add to it three great demands and forward move, are a living command conditioning him whether he will or not. The inability to withdraw from the position taken is one of the first true results of hearing the Word spoken after passing the two tests. There is an inevitability in living the life of the Spirit which is at once its horror and its joy. I mean just that. The symbol or first expression of this (for all in the three worlds is but the symbol of an inner reality) is the driving urge to betterment which is the outstanding characteristic of the human animal.

From discontent to discontent he passes, driven by an inner something which constantly reveals to him an enticing vision of that which is more desirable than his present state and experience. At first this is interpreted by him in terms of material welfare; then this divine discontent drives him into a phase of the struggle which is emotional in nature; he craves emotional satisfaction and later intellectual pursuits. All the time this struggle to attain something ever on ahead creates the instruments of attainment, gradually perfecting them until the threefold personality is ready for a vision of the soul. From that point of tension the urge and the struggle become more acute, until Rule One for Applicants is understood by him and he steps upon the Path. Once he is an accepted disciple and has definitely undertaken the work in preparation for initiation, there is for him no turning back. He could not if he would, and the Ashram protects him.

In this Rule for accepted disciples and initiates we are faced with a similar condition on a higher turn of the spiral, but with this difference (one which you can hardly grasp unless at the point where the Word goes forth to you): that the initiate stands alone in "isolated unity," aware of his mysterious oneness with all that is. The urge which distinguished his progress in arriving at personality-soul fusion is transmuted into fixity of intention, ability to move forward into the clear cold light of the undimmed reason, free from all glamour and illusion and having now the power to voice the three demands. This he can now do consciously and by the use of the dynamic will instead of making "application in triple form" as was the case before. This distinction is vital and significant of tremendous growth and development.

The initiate has heard the Word which came forth to him when he was irrevocably committed to hierarchical purpose. He has heard the Voice from Shamballa just as he earlier heard the Voice of the Silence and the voice of his Master. Occult obedience gives place to enlightened will. He can now be trusted to walk and work alone because he is unalterably one with his group, with the Hierarchy, and finally with Shamballa.

The key to this whole Rule lies in the injunction to the initiate that he add to his application three demands, and only after they have been voiced and correctly expressed and motivated by the dynamic will, does the further injunction come that he move forward. What are these three demands, and by what right does the initiate make them? Hitherto the note of his expanding consciousness has been vision, effort, attainment and again vision. He has therefore been occupied with becoming aware of the field—an ever-increasing and expanding area—of the divine revelation. In terms of practical occultism, he is recognising an ever widening sphere wherein he can serve with purpose and forward the Plan, once he has succeeded in identifying himself with that revelation. Until this revelation is an integral part of his life it is not possible for the initiate to comprehend the significance of these simple words. Identification is realisation, plus esoteric experience, plus again an absorption into the Whole, and for all of this (as I have earlier pointed out) we have no terminology. Now a master of that which has been seen and appropriated, and being conscious of and sensing that which lies ahead, the disciple "stands on his occult rights and makes his clear demands."

What these demands are can be ascertained by remembering that all that the initiate undergoes and all that he enacts is the higher and esoteric correspondence of the triple manifestation of spirit-energy which distinguished the first and earliest phase of his unfoldment. That is the personality.

I would like to call attention to the word "unfoldment," for it is perhaps the most explicit and correct word to use anent the evolutionary process. There is no better in your language. The initiate has ever been. The divine Son of God has ever known himself for what he is. An initiate is not the result of the evolutionary process. He is the cause of the evolutionary process, and by means of it he perfects his vehicles of expression until he becomes initiate in the three worlds of consciousness and the three worlds of identification.

According to ray type this unfoldment proceeds, and each triple stage of the lower unfoldment makes possible later (in time and space) the higher unfoldment in the world of the Spiritual Triad. What I am doing in these instructions is to indicate the relation between the threefold personality and the Spiritual Triad, linked and brought together by the antahkarana. Each of these three lower aspects has its own note and it is these notes which produce the sounding forth of the three demands which evoke response from the Spiritual Triad and thus reach the Monad in its high place of waiting in Shamballa.

In 1922, in my book Letters on Occult Meditation I laid the foundation in my first chapter for the more advanced teaching which I am now giving. There I was dealing with the alignment of the ego with the personality, and this was the first time that the entire theme of alignment was brought definitely into focus, for alignment is the first step towards fusion, and later towards the mysteries of identification. Let me quote:

"As time progresses, and later with the aid of the Master, harmony of colour and tone is produced (a synonymous matter) until eventually you will have the basic note of matter, the major third of the aligned personality, the dominant fifth of the ego, followed by the full chord of the Monad or Spirit. It is the dominant we seek at adeptship, and earlier the perfected third of the personality. During our various incarnations we strike and ring the changes on all the intervening notes, and sometimes our lives are major and sometimes minor, but always they tend to flexibility and greater beauty. In due time each note fits into its chord, the chord of the Spirit; each chord forms part of a phrase, the phrase or group to which the chord belongs; and the phrase goes to the completion of one seventh of the whole. The entire seven sections, then, complete the sonata of this solar system—a part of the threefold masterpiece of the Logos or God, the Master-Musician."

We now arrive at a point which it is difficult for disciples to grasp. The initiate or disciple has reached a point in his evolution in which triplicity gives place to duality, prior to the attainment of complete unity. Only two factors are of concern to him as he "stands at the midway point," and these are Spirit and Matter. Their complete identification within his consciousness becomes his major goal, but only in reference to the whole creative process and not now in reference to the separated self. It is this thought which motivates the service of the initiate, and it is this concept of wholeness gradually creeping into the world consciousness which is indicating that humanity is on the verge of initiation. Therefore, it is the material aspect, "the perfected third of the Personality," which makes possible the activity of the initiate as he sounds out his three demands. The "dominant fifth of the ego" makes itself heard at the third initiation, marking the attainment of at-one-ment, and this fades out at the fourth initiation. At that time the egoic vehicle, the causal body, disappears. Then only two divine aspects remain; the perfected, radiant, organised and active substance through which the initiate can work in full control, the matter aspect, and the dynamic life principle, the spirit aspect, with which that "substantial divine Reality" still awaits identification. It is this thought which underlies the initiate's three demands which (according to the Rule earlier given to aspirants and disciples) must sound forth "across the desert, over all the seas and through the fires."

It is not possible for me explicitly to give an understanding of the nature of these demands. I can only give you certain symbolic phrases which, intuitively interpreted, will give you a clue.

The first demand is made possible because "the desert life is passed; it flourished and it flowered, and then the drought arrived and man removed himself. That which had nourished and contained his life became an arid waste and naught was left but bones and dust and a deep thirst which naught in sight could satisfy." Yet to the initiate consciousness it remains clear that the desert land must be made anew to flourish like a rose and that his task is the restoration (by the distribution of the waters of life) of its pristine beauty, and not the beauty of its false flowering.

He demands, therefore, upon the note of the lower aspect of the personality (I am talking in symbols), that this flowering forth should take place according to the Plan. This involves upon his part a vision of that plan, identification with the underlying purpose, and the ability—through the medium of the higher mind, which is the lowest aspect of the Spiritual Triad—to work in the world of ideas and to create those forms of thought which will aid in the materialising of the Plan in conformity with the Purpose. This is the creative work of thoughtform building and that is why, we are told, that the first great demand "sounds forth within the world of God's ideas and towards the desert, a long time left behind. Upon that great demand the initiate who has pledged himself to serve the world returns into that desert, bringing with him the seed and water for which the desert cries."

The second demand is related to the earlier cry of the disciple, which was sounded forth "over the seas." It refers to the world of glamour in which humanity struggles, and to the emotional world in which mankind is sunk as if drowning in the ocean. We are told in the Bible, and the thought is based on information to be found in the Archives of the Masters, that "there shall be no more sea"; I told you that a time comes when the initiate knows that the astral plane no longer exists. For ever it has vanished and has gone, but when the initiate has freed himself from the realm of delusion, of fog, of mist and of glamour, and stands in the "clear cold light" of the buddhic or intuitional plane (the second or middle aspect of the Spiritual Triad), he arrives at a great and basic realisation. He knows that he must return (if such a foolish word can suffice) to the "seas" which he has left behind, and there dissipate the glamour. But he works now from "the air above and in the full light of day." No longer does he struggle in the waves or sink immersed in the deep waters. Above the sea he hovers within the ocean of light, and pours that light into the depths. He carries thus the waters to the desert and the light divine into the world of fog.

Yet he never leaves the place of identification, and all that he now does is carried forward from the levels attained at any particular initiation. All that he does "upon the desert, and over the seas" is undertaken through the power of thought, which directs the needed energy and certain destined and chosen forces so that the Plan (let me repeat myself) may go forward according to divine purpose through the power of the dynamic spiritual will. When you can appreciate that the initiate of high degree works with monadic energy and not soul force, you can understand why he finds it necessary ever to work behind the scenes. He works with the soul aspect and through the power of monadic energy, using the antahkarana as a distributing agency. The disciples and initiates of the first two degrees work with soul force and through the medium of the centres. The personality works with forces.

The third great demand has in it a different implication, and sounds forth, we are told, "through the fires." In this solar system there is no evading the fire. It is found at all levels of divine expression as we well know from our study of the three fires—fire by friction, solar fire and electric fire, with their differentiations, the forty-nine fires—of the seven planes.  Always, therefore, whether it is the cry of the disciple or the demand of the initiate, the sound goes forth "through the fire, to the fire, and from the fire." Of this technique, underlying the potent demand, there is little that I may say. From the highest plane of the spiritual will, what is technically called "the atmic plane," the demand goes forth and the result of that demand will work out on mental levels, just as the earlier two demands worked out on the physical and astral levels.

I would interject here that even though there is no astral plane, from the standpoint of the Master, yet thousands of millions recognise it and labour in its delusive sphere and are there aided by the initiated disciple working from the higher corresponding levels. This is true of all the planetary work, whether accomplished by initiates and Masters, working directly in the three worlds, or from higher levels, as work the Nirmanakayas (the creative Contemplatives of the planet), or from Shamballa from the Council Chamber of the Lord of the World. All the efforts of the Hierarchy or of the "conditioning Lives" (as They are sometimes called) of Shamballa are dedicated to the furthering of the evolutionary plan which will finally embody divine purpose. I keep emphasising this distinction between plan and purpose with deliberation, because it indicates the next phase of the working of the intelligent will in the consciousness of humanity.

More anent these three demands I may not imply. I have told you much, had you the awakened intuition to read the significance of some of my comments. These demands refer not only to the evolution of humanity, but to all forms of life within the consciousness of the planetary Logos. The directing mind of the initiate indicates within the three worlds the goal of attainment.

  1. Let there be no recollection and yet let memory rule.

This is not a contradictory statement. Perhaps I can convey to you the right idea as follows:  The initiate wastes no time in looking backward towards the lessons learned; he works from the angle of developed habit, instinctively doing the right and needed thing. Instinctual response to environing forms builds, as we well know, patterns of behaviour, of conduct and of reaction. This establishes what might be called unconscious memory, and this memory rules without any effort at recollection.

The habit of goodness, or right reaction and of instinctual understanding is distinctive of the trained initiate. He has no need to remember rules, theories, planes or activities. These are as much an established part of his nature as the instinct of self-preservation is an instinctive part of the equipment of a normal human being. Think this out and endeavour to build up the right spiritual habits. In this way the Master wastes no time on soul or personal plans. He has the habit—based on divine instinctual memory—of right activity, right understanding and right purpose. He needs not to recollect.

  1. Work from the point of all that is within the content of the group's united life.

This is not, as might appear, the effort to do the work for humanity as it is planned or desired by the group with which the initiate finds himself associated. The mode of working covers an earlier phase and one in which the accepted disciple learns much. First, he finds a group upon the physical plane whose ideals and plans for service conform to his idea of correct activity, and with this group he affiliates himself, works, learns, and in learning, suffers much. Later he finds his way into a Master's Ashram, where his effort is increasingly to learn to use the will in carrying out the Plan and to accommodate himself to the group methods and plans, working under the law of occult obedience for the welfare of humanity.

The initiate, however, works in neither of these ways, though he has acquired the habit of right contact with organisations in the three worlds and right cooperation with the Hierarchy. He works now under the inspiration of and identification with the life aspect—the united life aspect of his ray group and of all groups. This means that the significance of the involutionary life and the evolutionary life is fully understood by him. His service is invoked by the group or groups needing his help. His response is an occult evocation given in unison with the group of servers with which he is affiliated on the inner side. This is a very different thing to the mode of service generally understood.

  1. RULE THREE

The next Rule continues the above theme and gives some instructions in terse phrases and symbols on the Science of Invocation and Evocation and its significant ritual or programme. This programme is, in reality, an expression or a human formulation of the Science of Sound, just in so far—as yet—as Sound affects humanity and human affairs. Forget not my earlier teaching upon the Word; remember also that the Sound is the sound or note of Life Itself, embodying its dynamic impulse, its creative power, and its responsive sensitivity to all contacts.

Rule III

Dual the moving forward. The Door is left behind. That is a happening of the past. Let the cry of invocation issue forth from the deep centre of the group's clear cold light. Let it evoke response from the bright centre, lying far ahead. When the demand and the response are lost in one great Sound, move outward from the desert, leave the seas behind, and know that God is Fire.

This is perhaps one of the two most occult rules which the initiate has to master, whether as an individual or in conjunction with his group. The group recognises and works under the pervasive influence of the purpose; the individual initiate works with the plan. The group expression, as far as in it lies at any given moment in time and space, is in line with the will of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being, the Life of all that is. The individual initiate uses the attractive force (to which we give the oft misleading name of love) of that fundamental Life to gather together that which will give body to form and so manifest the will. The group can be, and frequently is, responsive to the "bright centre," Shamballa, where the initiate by himself and in his own essential identity cannot so respond. The individual must be protected by the group from the terrific potencies which emanate from Shamballa. These must be stepped down for him by the process of distribution, so that their impact is not focussed in any one or all of his centres but is shared by all the group members. Here is the clue to the significance of group work. One of its major functions, esoterically speaking, is to absorb, share, circulate, and then distribute energy.

This process of protection and of distribution is one of the functions of the great meeting of all the Hierarchy, under the aegis of the three Great Lords (the Manu, the Mahachohan and the Christ) in that high and sacred valley in the Himalayas where annually—after due preparation—the Hierarchy makes contact with Shamballa and a relationship is then set up between the "bright and living centre" and the "radiating and magnetic centre," in order that the "acquiescent waiting centre" may be stimulated to move forward upon the ladder of evolution. Even the Hierarchy itself needs the protection of its full membership in order rightly to absorb the incoming energies, and later wisely to distribute the forces of the divine will in the three worlds where lies Their major responsibility. The focussed will of God, in its immediate implications and application, constitutes the point of tension from which Shamballa works in order to bring about the eventual fruition of the divine Purpose.

There is a definite distinction between Purpose and Will; it is subtle indeed, but quite definite to the advanced initiate, and therefore the dualistic nature of our planetary manifestation and our solar Expression appear even in this. The Members of the Council at Shamballa recognise this distinction and therefore divide Themselves into two groups which are called in the ancient parlance, Registrants of the Purpose and Custodians of the Will. Will is active. Purpose is passive, waiting for the results of the activity of the will. These two groups are reflected in hierarchical circles by the Nirmanakayas or the Planetary Contemplatives, and the Custodians of the Plan. The function of the Registrants of the Purpose is to keep the channel open between our Earth, the planet Venus and the Central Spiritual Sun. The function of the Custodians of the Will is to relate the Council, the Hierarchy and Humanity, thus creating a basic triangle of force between the three major centres of the planetary Life. This is the higher expression (symbolic, if you like) of the six-pointed star, formed of two interlaced triangles. A replica of this fundamental triangle and of this symbol of energy, with its inflow and distribution, is to be found in the relation of the three higher centres in the human being—head, heart and throat—to the three lower centres—solar plexus, sacral centre and the centre at the base of the spine. The Science of Invocation and Evocation is also seen to be symbolically proceeding along evolutionary lines.

Worship, the attitude of the mystic, must give place to Invocation in the man who knows he is divine. This symbolic revelation is to be seen in the lifting up of the three lower energies and their evocative response to the three higher, thus producing an eventual unity at the point of tension. I realise that this is a hard thing to comprehend because it embodies truths which are difficult for the disciple to grasp. But they will be grasped and mastered by each one as he proceeds along the Path of Discipleship and submits to the needed training for initiation. They will also be mastered, later in this century and in the next, by the rapidly developing humanity, thus demonstrating that the initiation of the moment becomes the past achievement of the masses eventually. This enhanced liberation will later appear as a definite result of the war. The Atlantic Charter and the Four Freedoms, formulated in the tension produced by the world agony and strain, are the reflections of this, and embody all that it is possible for average materially-minded man to grasp of the present will of Shamballa as it conditions the plans of the Hierarchy and is impulsed by the Registrants of the Purpose. This is as far as the two groups of Custodians have been able to convey this revelation to the best human intellects—the first group dealing with the senior members of the Hierarchy and the latter with those initiates and disciples who are closely related to humanity.

Here again we come up against the fact that the Science of Invocation and Evocation, with which this Rule fundamentally deals, is primarily a great and scientific activity of which modern humanity knows practically nothing, but which is related to thought power and to thoughtform building. Only initiates of the highest degree—such as the three Great Lords—have the right to invoke alone and unaccompanied by any protective agency, such as a group, and the reason for that is that They Themselves are members of the Council at Shamballa and are individually Registrants of the Purpose. The annual appearance of the Lord Buddha is the outer demonstration or symbol of the emergence of this Science of Invocation and Evocation in the waking consciousness of humanity. Prayer is the dim, faint and inadequate expression of this; affirmation of divinity in order to gain material well-being is a distortion of this truth. This needs to be remembered. The true significance of this emerging science is that, in the early or first stages, it embodies the seed concept of the new world religion.

In the great invocations which I have given out, the first one, "Let the Forces of Light bring illumination to mankind..." was an effort on my part to put into words the invocative cry of mankind and of all men and women of goodwill throughout the world. Its success was indicative of the strength of that goodwill. The second, "Let the Lords of Liberation issue forth...") can, in reality, only be used with any measure or hope of success by aspirants, disciples and initiates, and hence was not nearly so popular with the general public, though in reality much more powerful and potentially effective. It was essential, however, that a fusion of the two groups should take place before the invocative cry of humanity as a whole could be powerful and effective in evoking response. (Externalization of the Hierarchy)

Prior to taking up the study, phrase by phrase, of Rule III, I would call your attention to the relation between this Rule and the earlier one given to applicants. The applicant sends out his cry—across the desert, over all the seas and through the fires. His entire personality, integrated and oriented, is focussed at a point of tension; then he utters his cry (symbolic of a voiceless expression) and this cry beats against the door which separates him from the soul, in the first instance, and from the Hierarchy, in the second. The door is only a symbol of separation; it divides one place from another location, one sphere of activity from another, and one state of consciousness from another. It fosters in the aspirant a sense of duality. It is a word descriptive of the mystic attitude. This attitude embraces the concepts of here and there, of soul and body, of God and man, of Hierarchy and humanity. But Rule III, as voiced for initiates, demonstrates that this mystical realisation finally goes; the sense of separation disappears, and the door is left behind.

  1. Dual the moving forward. The Door is left behind. That is a happening of the past.

The first point which should be noted is that we have here the definition of an initiate. He is one who, in his two-fold nature (soul and personality), moves forward. No longer is his point of tension that of the personality. He has fused and blended two divine aspects in himself, and they now constitute one integrated unit. This fusion produces its own point of tension.  He has moved forward through the door. A point of tension again ensues in which a Word goes forth in response to the invocative cry of the new initiate. A Word is returned to him:  Accepted as a group.  Then he, with the group of which he is now a recognised part, moves forward. For the initiate (as I have earlier pointed out) the past is left behind: "Let there be no recollection"; the present embodies a point of tension; the future indicates a moving forward from that point of tension as a result of its effective action.

The door closes behind the initiate, who is now an accepted member of his group, and as the Old Commentary puts it, "its sound in closing informs the watching world that the initiate has passed into a secret place and that to reach him in the real sense they too must pass that door." This conveys the thought of individual self-initiation, to which all must be subjected, and indicates also the loneliness of the initiate as he moves forward. He does not yet understand all that his group as a whole grasps; he is himself not understood by those on the other side of the door. He has sensed for some time the group with which he is now affiliated, and is becoming increasingly aware of their spiritual impersonality, which seems to him to be almost a form of aloofness and which in no way feeds in him those elements which are of a personality nature; he therefore suffers. Those left behind as a part of his old life in no way comprehend his basic (even if undeveloped) impersonality. This attitude of theirs evokes in him, when sensed, a resentment and a criticism which he realises is not right but which at this stage he seems unable to avoid, whilst those he criticises endeavour to tear him down or (at the least) to make him feel despised and uncomfortable.

In the early stages he takes refuge from those left behind by withdrawing himself and by much unnecessary and almost obtrusive silence. He learns to penetrate into the consciousness of his new group by strenuously endeavouring to develop their capacity for spiritual impersonality. He knows it is something which he must achieve and—as he achieves it—he discovers that this impersonality is not based on indifference or upon preoccupation, as he had thought, but upon a deep understanding, upon a dynamic focus on world service, upon a sense of proportion and upon a detachment which makes true help possible. Thus the door and the past are left behind. St. Paul attempted to express this idea when he said: "Forgetting the things which are behind, press forward towards the prize of your high calling in Christ." I would ask your attention to the word "calling."

  1. Let the cry of invocation issue forth from the deep centre of the group's clear cold light.

We are not here dealing with the light in the head or with soul light as it is perceived by the attuned and aligned personality. That too is left behind, and the initiate is aware of the light of the Ashram and the all-including light of the Hierarchy.  These are two aspects of soul light which the individual light in the head has revealed. That soul light which the initiate has been aware of from the first moment of soul contact, and at rapidly decreasing intervals, is created by the fusion of the light of the soul with the light of substance itself, and is the inevitable and automatic consequence of the purification of the three vehicles and of creative meditation. We are told in the world Scriptures that "in that light shall we see Light"; and it is to this other Light that I now refer—a light which is only to be perceived when the door is shut behind the initiate. That light is itself composed of the light of buddhi and the light of atma, and these are (to interpret these Sanskrit terms esoterically) the light of the pure reason, which is the sublimation of the intellect, and the light of the spiritual will, which is the revelation of the enfolding purpose.  The first is focussed in the Ashram, and the second in the Hierarchy as a whole, and both of them are the expression of the activity of the Spiritual Triad.

Let me make myself clearly understood, if possible. You have, therefore, three great lights, all of them focussed upon the mental plane, for beyond that plane the symbolism of light is not used; divinity is known as life, where the Monad and its expression, the Spiritual Triad, are concerned.

All the lights are finally focussed upon the mental plane:

  1. The blended light of soul and personality.

  1. The light of the egoic group which, when forming a recognised group in the consciousness of the illumined initiate, is called an Ashram, embodying the light of buddhi or pure reason.

  1. The light of the Hierarchy as a centre of radiance in the planetary body and embodying the light which understanding of the plan and cooperation with that plan produce, and which comes from identification—upon mental levels—with the spiritual will.

All these three aspects of light can be described as:

  1. The light which is thrown upward. This is the lesser light, from the angle of the Monad.

  1. The light which the Spiritual Triad reflects upon the mental plane.

  1. The focussed light which is produced by the meeting of the two lights, the higher and the lower.

These are the higher correspondence of the blazing forth of the light in the head, when the light of the personality and the light of the soul make contact. Beyond the mental plane, the initiatory impulse or emphasis is upon the life aspect, upon dynamic energy, and upon the cause of manifestation, and this incentive to progress is not based on revelation, which is ever incident to or related to the significance of light. Light and revelation are cause and effect. The coming revelation for which all men wait, and which will come when world adjustment has reached an already determined point, is concerned with the impartation to the human consciousness of the meaning and purpose of life; this will take place in a gradually unfolding series of spiritual events.

I cannot and must not put these truths more clearly, even if the necessary words were available to express what is not as yet even dimly sensed by disciples of the first and second degrees of initiation. What will come through that series of spiritual happenings and their inevitable reaction upon the whole body of humanity is in no way related to consciousness, to revelation or to light. There will come to humanity at some moment still a long way ahead a period of realisation, constituting both a point of crisis and a point of tension. That realisation will summarise, in effective conditioning consciousness, all that the quality of sensitivity has conveyed to mankind throughout the ages. It is the consummation of the activity of the Christ-consciousness, and is the state referred to when it is said of the Christ: "He shall see of the travail of his soul and be satisfied."

At the crisis of that revelation, at its highest point of tension, humanity as with one voice will say: "Behold! All things are become new." This is the apotheosis of vision and the prelude to an unfoldment in the general massed human consciousness (from that point in time slowly brought about) of certain powers and capacities of which the race is today totally unaware. The immediate revelation ahead will be only the first step towards this distant related point, and its significance will not be apparent to the present generation, or even to the next; it will, however, be steadily though gradually appreciated as the new world religion with its emphasis upon the invocation of energies and the evocation of "life more abundantly" is developed and has its inevitable effect. Students would do well to bear in mind that the impact of energies upon forms produces results which are dependent upon the quality of the forms receiving the impression. This is a statement of occult law.

It must be remembered that the Science of Invocation and Evocation is a reciprocal effort. Humanity could not be invocative were it not that the Spiritual Hierarchy (and by that term I include both Shamballa and the planetary Hierarchy) is evoking the spirit of man. The invocative cry of humanity is evoked by the invocation or Sound of the spiritual hierarchies. Man's responsibility, however, is to invoke at this time the Lords of Liberation and the Spirit of Peace.  These are the Beings which have the power to raise humanity, once the race of men has assumed the right attitude. They correspond to the group, in the third degree of Masonry, who raise the Master. Their response to the cry of mankind is largely, but not wholly, dependent upon the quality of that cry.

I wonder if I could make the problem of invocation clearer to you if I were to suggest that the words, "issue forth from the deep centre of the group's clear cold light," have a meaning both for the individual initiate and for all groups of disciples and all Ashrams? The use of the words, "clear cold light," is deeply symbolical. The clarity of that light indicates the function of the soul, as its great light enables the initiate to see light. The coldness of that light refers to the light of substance, which cannot be warmed into a glow by desire or by the heat of passion, but is now and at last only responsive to the light of the soul. It is therefore cold to all that limits and hinders, and this state of personality consciousness has to be realised at the very centre of man's being; there the clear light of the soul and the cold light of the personality are united in the deepest conscious point of the disciple's nature, at the extreme point of withdrawal (for which all concentration exercises and meditation processes have been a scientific preparation). Then, through the produced tension, the invocative cry can go forth with power and effectiveness. The same is true of the disciple's group or of any group of true and selfless aspirants. There can come a moment in the life of the group when the blended cold light of the contributing personalities and the clear light of their souls can so function that united invocative cry will evoke a response. That cry will ever be concerned with the selfless service of the group—a service which, under the Plan, they are seeking to render to humanity.

Certain great concepts are firmly grasped by man. Certain great hopes are taking form and will become the pattern of man's living. Certain great speculations will become experimental theories and later prove demonstrated facts.

Behind all this, two things are happening: Men are being stimulated and brought to that point of necessary tension which (as a result of a crisis) must precede a great moving forward upon the Path of Evolution.

Secondly, a process of reorientation is going on which will eventually enable the mass of men to present a united front upon views hitherto regarded as the vague visions of intelligent and optimistic dreamers. A great stirring and moving is going on. The world of men is seething in response to the inflow of spiritual energy. This energy has been evoked by the unrealised and inaudible cry of humanity itself. Humanity has become—for the first time in its history—spiritually invocative.

Let us now consider briefly the nature of that which is being evoked, and thus gain an insight into the interrelation which exists between the three great planetary centres: The human centre, the hierarchical centre, and Shamballa. Each of these is evocative to the one functioning at a slower or lesser speed (if I might use such inappropriate terms) and invocative to the one above it—again using a form of words which is misleading in the extreme; there is no higher or lower and no greater or lesser in our universe of reality.  There is only the interpenetration of substances which are all basically expressions of matter, and their vitalisation and organisation into forms of expression of the unknown Real. This essential Reality, we call spirit or life.

As a result of the interplay of these two, humanity eventually appears in time and space. Humanity is the result of all sub-human forms of expression and experience and of the activity of superhuman Beings. These superhuman Beings are the product of past evolutionary systems and are in Themselves the sum total of the great Divine Sacrifice as it focusses itself in our planetary life. Having passed through all previous phases of existence and perfected the consciousness aspect in Themselves through human experiences, They have transcended all that men can know and all states of consciousness with which he is or may be in the future familiar, and are now expressing a phase of divinity of which he can know naught. They LIVE. They are energy itself, and in Their totality They form the "bright centre lying far ahead."

  1. Let it evoke response from the bright centre, lying far ahead.

To this centre we give the name Shamballa, the component letters of which are numerically: S.H.A.M.B.A.L.L.A. or 1.8.1.4.2.1.3.3.1. This word equals the number 24 which in its turn equals 6. I would call your attention to the fact that the word has in it nine letters, and—as you know—nine is the number of initiation. The goal of all the initiatory process is to admit mankind into realisation of and identification with the will or purpose of Deity. The number 6 is the number of form or of manifestation, which is the agent or medium through which this realisation comes and by which the consciousness is unfolded so that it can become the foundation of the higher process which is instituted at the third initiation. That initiation is closely related to the third major centre, Shamballa; it is the third, from the angle of man's perception and understanding, but the first from the angle of Deity Itself. Again, 6 being the number of the sixth ray, it is therefore the number of idealism and of that driving force which makes mankind move forward upon the path and in response to the vision and press upward towards the light. It is in reality devotion to an unseen goal, ever on ahead, and an unswerving recognition of the objective.

Like all other divine qualities, it has its material counterpart, and that is why 666 is regarded as the number of the Beast or of materialism, the number of the dominance of the three worlds prior to the process of reorientation and the expression of developed idealism and purpose. The third aspect expresses itself through pure materialism, and hence the three sixes. In an ancient book on numbers the initiate is defined as "the one who has experienced and expressed 666 and found it naught; who has dropped the 6 and become the 66, and thus has found himself upon the WAY; later, again, he drops the 6 and becomes the perfected 6—form, the instrument and expression of spirit."

The number 24 is of deep interest, expressing as it does the double 12—the greater and the lesser zodiac. Just as the number 6 expresses space, so the number 24 expresses time, and is the key to the great cycle of manifestation.  It is the clue to all cyclic appearance or incarnation.  Its two figures define the method of evolution; 2 equals the quality of love-wisdom, working under the Law of Attraction and drawing man from one point of attainment to another; whilst 4 indicates the technique of conflict and the achieving of harmony through that conflict; 4 is also the number of the human hierarchy, and 2 is the number of the spiritual hierarchy.  Technically speaking, until the third initiation, the initiate is "occupied with the relationship of the 2 and the 4; these, when placed side by side, connote relation; and when placed the one above the other, the initiate passes from the 4 into the 2." Needless to say, there is much more to say anent these figures, but the above will suffice to show the satisfactory nature of esoteric numerology—not numerology as understood today.

I would have you note that the sounds which compose the word "Shamballa" are predominantly along the line of will or power or of first ray energy. Of the nine letters, six are on the first ray line of force. 1.1.1.3.3.1.—spirit and matter, will and intelligence. Two of them are along the second line of force, 4 and 2. The number 8 inaugurates ever a new cycle, following after the number 7, which is that of a relative perfection. It is the number of the Christ-consciousness; just as 7 is the number of man, 8 is the number of the Hierarchy, and 9 is the number of initiation or of Shamballa. Forget not that, from the angle of the Hierarchy, the third initiation is regarded as the first major initiation.

These preliminary remarks are intended to convey much esoteric information to those who realise that number gives the clue to the form and purpose of the life which the form veils. At the third major initiation, the third planetary initiation (which is in fact the first solar initiation), the liberated disciple for the first time—alone and unaided—invokes the highest spiritual centre on our planet, Shamballa. This he does because, for the first time, consciously and with understanding, he registers the life aspect (which has brought his soul into action through the medium of form) and vibrates to the Monad. That registration enables him to contact "the bright centre, lying far ahead," to blend his individual will with the divine will, and to cooperate with the purpose aspect of manifestation. He has learnt to function through form; he has become aware, as a soul, of the divine form in its many aspects and differentiations; he now starts off upon the way of the higher unfoldment, of which the first step is contact with Shamballa, involving the fusion of his self-will and his spiritual will with the Will of God.

At the third initiation he stands before the One Initiator, the Lord of the World, and "sees His star shine forth" and hears the sound which—to quote the Old Commentary: "...pours forth from that central point of power where substance and the outer life have met together, where spirit utters loud the cry which drew the form to meet the highest need; where energy comes forth and blends with force and (in the blending) music had its start within the sphere of blending and of being thus created. Man only hears the distant sound and knows it not for what it is. The disciple hears the sound and sees its form. The one who stands for the third time upon the mountain top hears a clear note and knows it as his own, as ours, as yours, and yet the note which none have sounded forth."

  1. When the demand and the response are lost in one great Sound, move outward from the desert, leave the seas behind and know that God is Fire.

This means more than its obvious significance. Superficially it can mean that when the initiate hears the Sound, he leaves behind the desert life of physical incarnation, the emotional life of the astral plane, seething and unstable as the sea, and functions on the plane of mind, of which the symbol is fire. That is the most elementary and obvious meaning, and as this section of A Treatise on the Seven Rays is written for those with initiate understanding, the obvious interpretation will not prove satisfactory. The meaning must be broader and deeper. The words "outward from the desert" have application for the entire life of the incarnated Monad in the three worlds of human endeavour and enterprise. "Leaving the sea behind" has reference to the withdrawal of the initiate from all sensuous experience because, as I have pointed out, the state of consciousness or awareness is superseded when the higher initiations are taken and their place is filled by a state of being for which we have no word but the unsatisfactory one of identification. This state of being is something very different to consciousness as you understand it. The phrase therefore means (if such a misleading form of words can be justifiably used) that the initiate leaves consciousness itself behind and the five worlds of life expression are transcended; at the third initiation the initiate grasps what is meant when the One in Whom we live and move and have our being (note that expression) is referred to as Fire. I elaborated this theme in A Treatise on Cosmic Fire—a book which evades understanding by all except those with initiate consciousness. Fire is the sumtotal of that which destroys form, produces complete purity in that which is not itself, generates the warmth which lies behind all growth, and is vitality itself.

This initiate realisation is all brought about by the sudden appreciation or apprehension of sound, by the awakening of the inner ear to the significance of the Voice, just as the disciple in the earlier stage awakened to the significance of vision. That is why, at the third initiation, the initiate sees the star and hears the sound. At the first two initiations, he sees the light and hears the Word; but this is something different and is the higher correspondence to the earlier experience. It will be obvious that I can say no more upon this subject.

It is essential, however, that some knowledge begin to reach the public anent the highest spiritual centre to which (as the Gospel story intimates) Christ Himself was attentive. Frequently we read in the New Testament that "the Father spoke to Him," that "He heard a voice," and that the seal of affirmation (as it is occultly called) was given to Him. Only the Father, the planetary Logos, the Lord of the World, enunciates the final affirmative sound.  This has no reference—when it occurs—to the earlier initiations, but only to the final ones.

There are five obvious crises of initiation which concern the Master Jesus as step by step He took or re-enacted the five initiations. But lying behind this obvious and practical teaching, lies an undercurrent or thread of higher revelation. This is concerned with the realisations of the overshadowing Christ as He registered the Voice which is heard at the third, fifth, sixth and seventh initiations. The Gospel story gives us the five Initiations of the Master Jesus, beginning with the first and ending with the fifth. But it also gives the initiations of the Christ, starting from the second and ending with the seventh. The latter is left incomplete, and the Voice is not recorded, because at the Resurrection and Ascension we are not told of the hearing of the affirmative sound. That will be heard when the Christ completes His work at the time of the Second Coming.

Then the great seventh initiation, which is a dual one (love-wisdom in full manifestation motivated by power and will), will be consummated, and the Buddha and the Christ will together pass before the Lord of the World, together see the glory of the Lord, and together pass to higher service of a nature and calibre unknown to us.

In this connection it is wise to remember that three great energies are focussed in Shamballa, the seat of fire:

  1. The Energy of Purification: This is the power, innate in the manifested universe, which gradually and steadily adapts the substance aspect to the spiritual by a process which we call purification, where humanity is concerned. It involves the elimination of all that hinders the nature of divinity from full expression, and this again from inherent or latent capacity. This necessitates the leaving behind, stage after stage, cycle after cycle, life after life, and plane after plane, of every tendency in the form nature which veils or hides the glory of God. It is essentially the energy which substitutes good for evil. Human thinking has debased this concept so that purification is related mainly to physical phenomena and physical plane life and to a selfish idealism which is largely based on the thought of the sanitary care of substance. An enforced celibacy and a rigid vegetarianism are familiar instances of this, and these physical disciplines have been put in the place of emotional loveliness, mental clarity, intuitional illumination, and the thoughts of the aspirant become focussed downwards into matter and not outwards and upwards into light.

  1. The Energy of Destruction:  This is a destruction which removes the forms which are imprisoning the inner spiritual life, and hiding the inner soul light. This energy is therefore one of the major aspects of the purificatory nature of the divine Life, and that is the reason why I have put purification ahead of destruction. It is the destroying aspect of life itself, just as there is a destructive agency in matter itself. Two things must be borne in mind in connection with the destroyer aspect of Deity and with those responsible for its appearance:

  1. The destructive activity is set in motion through the will of Those Who constitute the Council at Shamballa and Who are instrumental in bringing the forms in all the subhuman kingdoms into line with the evolving purpose. Under cyclic law, this destructive energy comes into play and destroys the forms of life which prevent divine expression.

  1. It is also brought into activity through the determinations of humanity itself which—under the Law of Karma—makes man the master of his own destiny, leading him to initiate those causes which are responsible for the cyclic events and consequences in human affairs.

There is naturally a close connection between the first Ray of Will or Power, the energies concentrated at Shamballa and the Law of Karma, particularly in its planetary potency and in relation to advanced humanity. It will be apparent, therefore, that the more rapidly the individual aspirant approaches the third initiation, the more rapidly and directly will the individual's karma be worked out. Monadic relation, as it becomes established, lets loose the destructive aspect of the basic energy, and all hindrances are destroyed with expedition. This is true also of humanity as a whole. Two factors have, subjectively and spiritually, precipitated this world crisis: The growth and development of the human family and (as you have been told) the inflow of the Shamballa force at this particular time, both as a result of Karmic law and the planned decision of the Great Council.

  1. The Energy of Organisation: This is the energy which set in motion the activity of the great Ray Lives and started the motivation and impulse of that which produced manifestation. Thus were the seven ray qualities brought into expression. The relation of spirit and matter produced this ordered process which again, cyclically and under law, creates the manifested world as a field for soul development and as an area wherein divine purpose is wrought out through the medium of the plan. Again I call your attention to the distinction existing between purpose and plan. This is the aspect, emanating from Shamballa, and inherent also in form (as are the other two), which eventually relates the human will, through the right use of the mind, to the organised planning of his separate and individual life in the three worlds, and which eventually relates and reorients that will to the Will of God.

These three energies are faintly symbolised for us in the life of Christ when overshadowing the Master Jesus, two thousand years ago. The purificatory aspect of the monadic force is indicated at the Baptism episode; secondly, the destroyer aspect can be seen expressing itself at the time of the Crucifixion, when it rent the veil of the Temple from the top to the bottom. The episode which indicates the energy of organisation and the relation of the spiritual will of the Christ to the purpose and the will of the Father appears when He said, in the Garden of Gethsemane, "Not my will but Thine be done." This final episode is closely related to the consciously expressed will of the Christ Child when He realised in the Temple that He must be about His Father's business and that His will was to do the will and fulfill the purpose of the Father, the Monad and the One of Whom the Monad is the expression.

It is these three energies which have precipitated the world crisis, and it is helpful for us to recognise the factual nature of the Shamballa forces as they play upon our planetary life and work out human destiny. The great energy of purification is regenerating humanity, and of this the widespread fires which have been such an outstanding characteristic of this war (1914-1945) are the outward and visible sign. Much evil is being burnt out through the revelation of the appalling character of that evil, and through this, unity is being produced. Mankind has looked upon evil in every land and known it to be wrought by men. Men have seen, and that sight will never be forgotten, and the horror thus engendered will aid in stiffening the will of humanity to betterment. The energy of destruction has its side of beauty when the spiritual values are grasped. That which has so grossly imprisoned the human spirit is disappearing; the rocky grave of humanity is breaking open and releasing men to a life of resurrection. Forget not that in the interim between the tomb experience and the appearance in living form to His disciples, the Master Jesus went down into hell (figuratively speaking), carrying release for those to be found there. There will be an interim between the darkness of the war with the evil history of the past, and the appearance of a living civilisation and culture based on the spiritual values and intelligently developing the divine purpose. The stage is now being set for this.

The Crucifixion and the tomb experience lead eventually to resurrection and to life. The destruction is appalling, but it is only the destruction of the form side of manifestation in this particular cycle, and (a point which I would beg you not to forget) it is the destruction of much planetary evil, focussed for aeons in humanity as a whole and brought to the surface and precipitated into violent activity by a group of evil men whose destiny it was. This destiny was the result of their own deliberate choice, and of prolonged cycles of purely material selfishness.

I would ask all aspirants and disciples to ponder upon the destructive purpose of God—a purpose which is motivated by love, guided by a balanced judgment as to form, and which cherishes and fosters the life and its resultant spiritual values.

There is an inherent destructive energy in matter itself and an energy of very great potency; it is with this energy that the Axis Powers are working. The destructive energy, emanating from "the bright centre," Shamballa, is something very different, and I would ask you to remember this. The destroying power of spirit is not the same as that of matter. A human being destroys his own form again and again through the evil which he does and by the material focus of his desires; the following of a life of vice will breed disease, as is well known.

The disciple can also destroy his form nature through selfless service and devotion to a cause. In both cases the form is destroyed, but the motivating impulse is different and the energy of destruction comes from different sources. The death of a Master Jesus or of a Father Damien, and the death of a Hitler or of a murderer, are not the result of the same essential energies.

When the din of battle and the smoke and fire of bombing and the cruel effects on human bodies have faded into the past, it will be apparent to the understanding aspirant that much evil has been destroyed in all fields of human activity—in the field of theological religion, in the field of politics, and in the field of selfish economic competition. It will be for humanity then to precipitate and stabilise the appearing good, and this they will learn to do through the utilisation of the third Shamballa energy— the energy of organisation.

The new world will be built upon the ruins of the old. The new structure will rise. Men of goodwill everywhere, under the guidance of the New Group of World Servers, will organise themselves into battalions of life, and their first major task must be the development of right human relations, through the education of the masses. This means the paralleling development of an enlightened public opinion, which is (speaking esoterically) right response to the sound which conveys the will of God to the ears of the attentive. Then humanity will indeed move outward from the desert, leave the seas behind, and know that God is Fire.

  1. RULE FOUR

At the time of the June Full Moon, each year, the love of God, the spiritual essence of solar fire, reaches its highest point of expression. This it achieves through the instrumentality of the Hierarchy, that great group of souls which has ever been the custodian of the principle of light, of enlightened love, and which always—down the ages—focusses its attention upon the race of men when the spiritual influence is at its height. This it does through one of the great Sons of God. The Full Moon of June of 1943 saw this outpouring of divine love reach its highest expression for all time, and at the point of attainment which is, for that particular Son of God, His highest also. Such is the Law. When an embodied Christ in time and space reaches His goal of achievement, recognition of this comes to Him at the time of the June Full Moon, for in that sign of Gemini the complete victory of life over form, and of spirit over matter, is consummated and celebrated.

The love of God, focussed in the Christ, seeks to express itself in some act of peculiarly useful service to humanity. This service has taken different forms down through the ages, but it has always expressed itself through two episodes: One of them, the first, reveals the Christ in His capacity of the God-Saviour, sacrificing Himself through pure love for His fellowmen. The annals of the Hierarchy contain many such histories of sacrifice and service, dating far back into the very night of time. The saving principle of pure love finds its expression at the hour of humanity's greatest need in the work of a World Saviour and "for the salvation of His people, He comes forth." He thus meets the need, and at the same time strengthens the link which relates the Hierarchy to Humanity. The task of the Christ (as the expression in time and space of the second divine aspect) is to establish relationships. Every cyclic Representative of Deity furthers the approach of the Hierarchy to mankind, and seals this service by some final act which becomes the historical nucleus whereby later generations remember Him.

That accomplished, He stays with His people as Head of the Hierarchy until His second opportunity comes, in which as Representative both of Humanity and the Hierarchy, He can relate them both to Shamballa. This He does through a great act of evocation, seeking to bring about a closer relationship between all the three great planetary centres: Shamballa, the Hierarchy, and Humanity. He can do this because the development of the Wisdom aspect in His nature makes it possible. The major linking agent in the universe is the energy of Love-Wisdom. Love relates the Hierarchy to Humanity, and Wisdom relates the Hierarchy to Shamballa. Only when Humanity and the Hierarchy are working together in a practical synthesis, can the Shamballa energy be permitted complete inflow through the medium of the two other centres.

To aid in this process of gradual perfecting and an eventual bringing about of a complete alignment, the help of the Buddha must be invoked and accepted. The work of the Christ as God-Saviour can be carried forward by Him alone and unaided. The work of the Christ as God the Preserver needs the united work, as yet, of the two highest Representatives of the second divine aspect when present together upon the Earth, as is the case today of both the Buddha and the Christ. This is the first cycle in the history of humanity when this has been the case. One or the other has been present down the ages, but not the two simultaneously. The reason for this is that the time has now been reached when Shamballa can be contacted and its energy evoked. Hence we have the activity of the Buddha at the May Full Moon and that of the Christ at the following June Full Moon. Their united activity serves to bring about a much closer approach between the Lord of the World and the Hierarchy, via His four Representatives: the Buddha, the Christ, the Manu, and the Mahachohan—the five points of energy which are creating the five-pointed star of Humanity at this time.

An ancient rule—Rule IV for Applicants gives us in perfect wording the nature of the urge which prompts the present activity of the Christ. He has accomplished His task as God the Saviour. The fourth Rule, as it is given to all applicants and probationary disciples, gives His work the following definition:

Let the disciple tend the evocation of the fire,

nourish the lesser lives and thus keep the wheel revolving.

It is given in this short form to all who are approaching the Path, in order to convey to them with the utmost brevity and beauty the nature of the life of the Head of the Hierarchy, the Initiator Whom they must face at the time of the first and second initiations, and upon Whose activities they—as individual aspirants—must learn to model their lives. Only today is it possible to present that work in other terms than those which emphasise the part the Christ plays in the salvaging of man.

It is now possible, however, to present His true and wider task, because man's sense of proportion, his recognition of others, his growing sense of responsibility, his power to suffer for the good, the beautiful and true, his appropriation of the vision, and his point in evolution warrant a truer picture which—if adequately grasped—will enable the disciple to comprehend the requirements of Rule IV as given for disciples and initiates. Only as they grasp the nature of the work of Christ, after His final act of service as God-Saviour, can they understand the nature of group service and begin to pattern their lives and natures so as to meet similar requirements in group formation.

This has become possible because of the point in the evolutionary process which the Hierarchy has attained. The attitude and position of the members of the Hierarchy are not static. All are moving forward. The Christ Who came two thousand years ago embodied in Himself not only the principle of love in the planetary sense (a thing which Shri Krishna had achieved), but a cosmic principle of love also, and this for the first time in human history. His achievement was made possible by the fact that the human family had reached a point at which it could produce the perfect Man, Christ, the "eldest in a great family of brothers," a Son of God, the Word made flesh. The future progress of humanity is also aided and hastened because of the attainment and activity of the Christ, and because He remains with us as God the Preserver.

His task today is threefold, and the Rule states in very simple language these three aspects of His divine activity or phases of His work. These are:

  1. He "tends the evocation of the fire." His major task as Head of the Hierarchy is to evoke the electric fire of Shamballa, the energy of the divine Will, and this in such a form that the Hierarchy can be drawn nearer to the source of Life, and Humanity can consequently profit by this hierarchical Approach and know eventually the meaning of the words "life more abundantly." Christ's evocation of the fire of the will was initiated symbolically in the Garden of Gethsemane. He has twice symbolically shown  His individual response to the Shamballa energy: Once in the Temple of Jerusalem as a child, and again in the Garden as a full grown man at the close of His earthly career. His third and final response (which climaxes His work from our human angle) covers nine years, from the Full Moon of June, 1936, to the Full Moon of June, 1945. This period, in reality, constitutes one event to Him Who lives now free in His Own world and free from the limitations of time and space. Having related Humanity to the Hierarchy (which in the case of individual man means relating the personality to the soul), He now seeks to relate more closely, with the aid of the Buddha, the Hierarchy to Shamballa, love to will, electric fire to solar fire.

  1. He "nourishes the lesser lives." This refers to the task of the Christ which proceeds day by day, in His capacity of God the Preserver. He "tends the little ones." The work here referred to concerns His activity as Initiator and His responsibility as Head of the Hierarchy. The nourishing of the little lives refers primarily to His task as World Teacher and to His responsibility to lead humanity on into the light, with the aid of all the Masters, working, each of Them through His Own Ashram.

  1. He "keeps the wheel revolving." This has a specific relation to His work as the Word of God, which manifests as the Word made flesh.  This refers specifically to the great Wheel of Rebirth whereby, upon that turning wheel, souls are carried down into incarnation and then up and out of the soul's prison; through the turning of the wheel, human beings learn their needed lessons, create cyclically their vehicles of expression (the response apparatus of the soul in the three worlds) and in this way, under soul guidance, and aided by the Hierarchy and its schools of instruction, they arrive at perfection. This entire process is under the control of the Christ, assisted by the Manu and the Lord of Civilisation. These three Great Lords thus represent the three divine Aspects in the Hierarchy; They, with the four Lords of Karma, form the seven Who control the whole process of incarnation. The subject is too vast and intricate to be adequately considered here. The above truth does, however, give us a clue as to why the Christ made no specific reference to the work of incarnation in His spoken utterances whilst on Earth. He was then occupied with His task of World Saviour.

His work as Preserver and as Head of the Hierarchy had not then begun. It was at that time dependent upon the experience in the Garden of Gethsemane and upon the Resurrection initiation. Some day the gold and the silver threads of the Gospel story will be disentangled, and men will know the two interpretations which can be put upon the events and episodes in the career of Jesus the Christ. The underlying true events give us great steps and developments in the work of the Christ as He "enveloped humanity in the mantle of love, grasped the rod of initiation on behalf of His brothers, and faced the Lord of Life Himself, unattended, unafraid and in His Own right." The episodes refer to happenings in the life of Jesus.

At the present time, and at the immediate point of tension, Christ has added to His two immediate and constant tasks that of hastening the coming of the Avatar Who waits for the perfected work of the Hierarchy, focussed in the Christ, and the powerful work of Shamballa, focussed in the Lord of the World. When the exact moment has arrived, the work of the Buddha, representing Shamballa, and of the Christ, representing the Hierarchy, plus the sincere demand of Humanity, will bring about an arrangement or an alignment which will release an evocative Sound which will be extra-planetary, and then the Avatar will come.

Ask me not for the date or the hour, brother of mine, for I know it not. It is dependent upon the appeal—the voiceless appeal—of all who stand with massed intent; it is dependent also upon the hour of exact alignment and upon certain aspects of work being done at this time by the senior Members of the Hierarchy, and also upon the steadfastness of the disciples in the world and the initiates—working in their various Ashrams. To this must be added what Christians call the "inscrutable will of God," the unrecognised purpose of the Lord of the World Who "knows His Own Mind, radiates the highest quality of Love, and focusses His Will in His Own high Place outside the Council Chamber of Shamballa."

That the Avatar will come is a predictable certainty. That His forerunner will be the Christ is equally sure. When Christ comes it will be for the advanced units of the human family; they will recognise Him because He has always been with us, whilst His advent will evoke a responsive vibration from the masses, but not straight recognition. In connection with the Avatar, it will be a process of hierarchical recognition of an overshadowing Presence within Whose aura the planetary Logos will take His stand as the planetary Representative. Then from Shamballa will descend a stream of spiritual potency, qualified by the will-to-good, and this will reach the attentive Hierarchy. The Members of this Group will, through the medium of the Christ, pour light and healing energy upon the Earth and peculiarly into the consciousness of men. I am not able to express the effect of the outpouring from Shamballa in clearer terms. We are told in the Bible that Christ will come in the air, and that He will bring the "healing of the nations" in His wings. I would call your attention to this thought and to its appositeness to this day and generation. I make no prophetical predictions, I only indicate possibility.

When the Avatar has made His appearance, then will the "Sons of men who are now the Sons of God withdraw Their faces from the shining light and radiate that light upon the sons of men who know not yet they are the Sons of God. Then shall the Coming One appear, His footsteps hastened through the valley of the shadow by the One of awful power Who stands upon the mountain top, breathing out love eternal, light supernal and peaceful silent Will.

Then will the sons of men respond. Then will a newer light shine forth into the dismal weary vale of earth. Then will new life course through the veins of men, and then will their vision compass all the ways of what may be. So peace will come again on earth, but a peace unlike aught known before. Then will the will-to-good flower forth as understanding, and understanding blossom as goodwill in men."

So speaks a prophetic passage in the ancient Archives of the Hierarchy which deals with the present cycle of distress (written in June, 1943). For this time men must prepare. You will know when the Avatar links up with the planetary Logos because I will then give you the final Stanza of the Great Invocation (given out in April, 1945). Its use will serve to bring the Coming One to recognition and enable Him to draw upon the resources of the Avatar in the task of world reorganisation and regeneration. He will again come as the World Saviour, but owing to the stupendous nature of the work ahead, He will be fortified and buttressed by the "silent Avatar" Who (occultly speaking) will "keep His eye upon Him, His hand beneath, and His heart in unison with His."

The keynote of Christ's mission will be to evoke from humanity a response to that influence, and an unfoldment on a large scale of intuitive perception. When He came before, He evoked from humanity a gradual response to truth, and mental understanding. That is why at the end of the cycle, which He inaugurated, we have formulated doctrine and mental development.

The work now being done by Shamballa and the Hierarchy on behalf of humanity will tend also to develop group consciousness and the formation of many groups which will be living organisms and not organisations; it will make group initiation possible and will enable certain aspects of the will to flower forth correctly and with safety. The tendency to overlook the distinction between groups and organisations is still very deep-seated; the coming of the Christ will throw much light upon this problem. A study of Rule IV as given to disciples and initiates will also serve to clarify this matter, and with that we shall now concern ourselves.

Rule IV

Let the group see that all the eighteen fires die down and that the lesser lives return unto the reservoir of life. This they must bring about through the evocation of the Will. The lesser wheels must not for aye revolve in time and space. Only the greater Wheel must onward move and turn.

This is a rule peculiarly related to the fourth Creative Hierarchy, embodying its goal as the Aryan rootrace can sense and approximate it. It is peculiarly related also to the quaternary to which we give the name "personality," composed of a vital or etheric body, a sumtotal of emotional states and a mind, plus that integrated something which we call the whole man. Rightly understood and followed, this rule reveals the nature of the fourth plane or fourth state of consciousness, that of buddhi or the plane of pure reason, the intuition. From the angle of the higher initiate, this rule is related to the activity of Monad, Soul and body within the planetary Life, and covers a great mystery and an entire system of relationships of which man in the three worlds is a dim and uncertain shadow.

Some clue to the higher quaternary dealt with in this rule will emerge dimly in your consciousness (more is not yet possible) if you will attempt to realise the following:

  1. The Monad relates the initiate to the Will of God, to the Council at Shamballa, to forces active on the planet Pluto, and on another planet which must remain nameless, and also to the Central Spiritual Sun.

  1. The Soul relates the initiate to the Love of God, to the consciousness aspect of Deity, to the Hierarchy as a whole, entering it through the Ashram of the Master Who has aided him to take initiation, to the planets Venus and Mercury, to the Sun Sirius, and to the Heart of the Sun.

  1. The Personality relates the initiate to the Mind of God, to the intelligence principle of the planetary Life, to humanity as a whole, to Saturn and Mars, and to the physical Sun through its pranic aspect.

  1. The Life aspect of the planet, or that great ocean of forces in which all these three aspects live and move and have their being, relates the initiate to that Life which works out through Shamballa, through the Hierarchy and through Humanity, thus forming part of the great sumtotal of manifestation.

It is to these major quaternaries that Rule IV refers, and their relationships only emerge as the initiate keeps the rules. Let us now take this rule stanza by stanza, and so get some understanding of its basic significances.

1. Let the group see that all the eighteen fires die down and the lesser lives return unto the reservoir

    of life.

A very casual consideration will show the student that this rule contains four sentences which refer to one or other of the four aspects we have been considering. Bear this in mind as we study significances, interpretations and carry our thoughts into the world of meaning.

A very cursory reading of the Rule leads one to the surmise that one of the most important hints concerns the effect of the group life and radiation upon the individual in the group. "Let the group see that all the eighteen fires die down and that the lesser lives return unto the reservoir of life." These words deal with the group personality, composed of all the personalities of its members. It should be borne in mind that a group is in itself an entity, having form, substance, soul and purpose or objective, and that none of these is better or greater, or more developed than the aggregate of group lives which compose it. Though individuals of varying points in evolution form the group, none of them is below the level of disciples upon the evolutionary ladder. A Master's Ashram has in it disciples and initiates of all degrees, but no probationary disciples at all. No one below the rank of disciples—accepted and dedicated—is admitted. This is one of the first Rules given to an accepted disciple when first admitted into the Ashram, and it is from that angle that we should now consider it.

The three Rules we have earlier considered are general in nature and relate to certain broad themes or demanded hypotheses which must govern the consciousness of the disciple in the future. In this particular Rule we enter the realm of the specific, and are presented with certain "intentional" activities which must govern the disciple's life now that he is an integral part of the Ashram. He is faced with the proposition of making his life of such a nature that it furthers the group purpose, enhances the group strength, eliminates all that might hinder group usefulness, and brings closer the objective for which the group was formed—the carrying out of the Master's plans. It was the disciple's innate, instinctual and individual response to this ray objective, and his effort to subordinate his personality to the dimly sensed soul dedication, which led the Master in the first instance to recognise him and incorporate him into his Ashram. The moment that happened, the disciple came not only under an increased impact of egoic force and egoic impulsive intention (using those words in their occult sense), but the group radiation began its beneficent work upon him.

The magnetic "pulling" power which had hitherto led him forward is now superseded by a radiating stimulating potency; this effects great changes in him, and produces both eliminating and substituting results. The effect of the life of the Ashram, as far as the group which forms it is concerned and apart from the Master's Own potency, can be described as follows:

  1. The life of the personality is steadily weakened, and its grip upon the soul is definitely loosened. The soul begins to dominate in a very real sense.

  1. The necessity of incarnation becomes appreciably less, and finally life in the three worlds of human manifestation becomes needless. All the lessons have been learnt and the soul objective has been attained.

  1. The Will of the Monad begins to be sensed; the will aspect blends with the love aspect and makes the intelligence aspect fruitful and effective for the carrying out of divine purpose, focussed for the disciple through the Ashram.

  1. The purposes of time and space, of events and extension, of matter and consciousness have been achieved and are eventually superseded by something for which we have as yet no term and of which we have no conception. It is that which begins to express itself after the third initiation, when the Father aspect "comes into view"—I know not how else to word it.

  1. The whole is seen to be of more vital importance than the part, and this not as a dream, a vision, a theory, a process of wishful thinking, an hypothesis or an urge. It is realised as an innate necessity and as inevitable. It connotes death, but death as beauty, as joy, as spirit in action, as the consummation of all good.

It will be obvious, therefore, that the interpretation of these Rules must involve capacity to pass beyond the usual attitudes and what one might call the usual metaphysical and theosophical platitudes, and to see life as the Hierarchy sees it. This means that life is approached from the angle of the Observer and not from that of a participator in actual experiment and experience in the three worlds.  This Observer is different to the Observer on the probationary Path. Most of the experiment and experience has been left behind, and a new orientation to a world of values, higher than even the world of meaning, has set in. This attitude might well be described as the mode of approach of all who form a part of an Ashram.

Those who form the Ashram are living in the three worlds of experience if they are accepted disciples, but the focus of their attention is not there. If they are initiated disciples, they are increasingly unaware of the activities and reactions of their personalities, because certain aspects of the lower nature are now so controlled and purified that they have dropped below the threshold of consciousness and have entered the world of instinct; therefore there is no more awareness of them than a man asleep is conscious of the rhythmic functioning of his sleeping physical vehicle. This is a deep and largely unrealised truth. It is related to the entire process of death and might be regarded as one of the definitions of death; it holds the clue to the mysterious words "the reservoir of life." Death is in reality unconsciousness of that which may be functioning in some form or another, but in a form of which the spiritual entity is totally unaware. The reservoir of life is the place of death, and this is the first lesson the disciple learns.

The eighteen fires refer to the eighteen states of matter which constitute the personality. They are: seven physical states of matter, seven emotional states, enabling the astral body to function on the seven subplanes of the astral plane, and four states of matter for each of the four conditions of the concrete mind. (7+7+4=18).

These are eighteen grades of substance, eighteen vibratory groups of atoms, and eighteen aggregates of life which form the bodies of the lunar lords which in their totality, form the body of the Lunar Lord, the Personality. The above is the very ABC of occultism and a familiar truth to all of you. What is referred to here has, however, no reference to processes of purification, of control or of discipline. These have been much earlier considered and are regarded as the necessary processes instituted upon the probationary path, and should have reached a point prior to the stage of accepted discipleship where—rapid or slow in expression—they are nevertheless automatic in action, sure and inevitable.

The first sentence in this fourth rule refers to Detachment—the detachment of the soul from the body or the institution of those activities which bring about what is called in the Bible "the second death." It is not detachment as the aspirant practices it. It is the scientific breaking of all links and the ending (through completed use) of all contacts which are now regarded as militating against liberation. It is in reality a scientific process of ending karma; it is individual and national karma which brings a man back into a physical vehicle and clothes him with the qualities and aspects of substance. This must end whilst he is a member of the Master's Ashram and is preparing himself for the triumph of the fourth initiation.  This is brought about by the automatic, ceaseless and unquestioning fulfillment of duty, from the angle of recognised service.

It might be stated that an intelligent understanding of this sentence will lead to those actions which "produce the death and dissipation and final dissolution of the personality through the ending of karma." It must be remembered that a Master has no personality at all. His divine nature is all that He has. The form through which He works (if he is working through and living in a physical vehicle) is a created image, the product of a focussed will and the creative imagination; it is not the product of desire, as in the case of a human being. This is an important distinction and one which warrants careful thinking. The lesser lives (which are governed by the Moon) have been dispersed. They no longer respond to the ancient call of the reincarnating soul, which again and again has gathered to itself the lives which it has touched and coloured by its quality in the past. The soul and the causal body no longer exist by the time the fourth initiation is undergone. What is left is the Monad and the thread, the antahkarana which it has spun out of its own life and consciousness down the ages and which it can focus at will upon the physical plane, where it can create a body of pure substance and radiant light for all that the Master may require. This will be a perfect body, utterly adapted to the need, the plan and the purpose of the Master. None of the lesser lives (as we understand the term) form part of it, for they can only be summoned by desire. In the Master there is no desire left, and this is the thought held before the disciple as he begins to master the significance of the fourth Rule.

In this Rule two main ideas are to be found, both of them connected with the first divine aspect: the thought of Death and the nature of the Will. In the coming century, death and the will inevitably will be seen to have new meanings for humanity, and many of the old ideas will vanish. Death, to the average thinking man, is a point of catastrophic crisis. It is the cessation and the ending of all that has been loved, all that is familiar and to be desired; it is a crashing entrance into the unknown, into uncertainty, and the abrupt conclusion of all plans and projects. No matter how much true faith in the spiritual values may be present, no matter how clear the rationalising of the mind may be anent immortality, no matter how conclusive the evidence of persistence and eternity, there still remains a questioning, a recognition of the possibility of complete finality and negation and an end to all activity, of all heart reactions, of all thought, emotion, desire, aspiration, and the intentions which focus around the central core of a man's being. The longing and the determination to persist and the sense of continuity still rest, even to the most determined believer, upon probability, upon an unstable foundation, and upon the testimony of others—who have never in reality returned to tell the truth. The emphasis of all thought on this subject concerns the central "I" or the integrity of Deity.

You will note that in this Rule, the emphasis shifts from the "I" to the constituent parts which form the garment of the Self, and this is a point worth noting. The information given to the disciple is to work for the dissipation of this garment and for the return of the lesser lives to the general reservoir of living substance. The ocean of Being is nowhere referred to. Careful thought will here show that this ordered process of detachment, which the group life makes effective in the case of the individual, is one of the strongest arguments for the fact of continuity and for individual identifiable persistence. Note those words.  The focus of activity shifts from the active body to the active entity within that body, the master of his surroundings, the director of his possessions, and the one who is the breath itself, despatching the lives to the reservoir of substance, or recalling them at will to resume their relation to him.

Putting it this way, you will note how the disciple is really enjoined to recognise (with the assistance of his group) that he is essentially the Father aspect himself, the first cause, the creative will and the breath of life within the form. This is a somewhat new attitude which he is asked to take, because hitherto the emphasis upon his focus has been to regard himself as the soul, reincarnating when desire calls and withdrawing when need arises. The group life as a whole is here needed to make possible this shift in realisation away from form and consciousness to the will and life aspect or principle.  When this has begun to take place, one of the first recognitions of the initiate-disciple is that form, and his consciousness of form and its contacts (which we call knowledge), have in themselves produced a great thought-form which has summed up in itself his entire relation to form, to existence and experience in the three worlds, to matter, to desire and to all that incarnation has brought him. The whole matter looms, therefore, over-large in his consciousness. The detaching of himself from this ancient thoughtform—the final form which the Dweller on the Threshold takes—is called by him Death. Only at the fourth initiation does he realise that death is nothing but the severing of a thread which links him to the ring-pass-not within which he has chosen to circumscribe himself. He discovers that the "last enemy to be destroyed" is brought to that final destruction by the first aspect in himself, the Father or Monad (which moved originally to create that form), the Life, the Breath, the directing energising Will. It is the will that, in the last analysis, produces orientation, focus, emphasis, the world of form, and above all else (because of its relation to the world of cause), the world of meaning.

Average man lives and has his being in the world of meaning; the initiate and the Master have their focus in the world of Being. They are then naught but will, illumined by love which links them with the world of meaning, and capable of intelligent activity which links them with the world of form, and is the indication of life. But the desire of the initiate is not now for activity, or even for the expression of love. These qualities are integral parts of his equipment and expression but have dropped below the threshold of consciousness (a higher correspondence of the automatic activities of the physical body which proceed upon their work without any realised consciousness on the part of the man). His effort is towards something which means little as yet to those of you who read these words; it is for the realisation of Being, immovable, immutable, living and only to be comprehended in terms which embody the concept of "It is not this; it is not that." It is No-Thing; it is not thought or desire. It is life, Being, the whole, the One. It is not expressed by the words "I am" or by the words "I am not." It is expressed by the words "I am that I am." Having said that, know you what I mean? It is the will-to-be which has found itself through the will-to-good.

Therefore, the eighteen fires must die down; the lesser lives (embodying the principle of form, of desire and of thought, the sum total of creativity, based upon magnetic love) must return to the reservoir of life and naught be left but that which caused them to be, the central will which is known by the effects of its radiation or breath. This dispersal, death or dissolution is in reality a great effect produced by the central Cause, and the injunction is consequently:

  1. This they must bring about through the evocation of the Will.

This type of death is ever brought about by a group, because it is from the earliest moment the one unmistakable expression of soul activity—as influenced consciously by the Monad or Father—and this activity is a group activity which wills the return of the lesser lives to the general reservoir from the very first moment that it has become apparent that the form experience has served its purpose and that the form has reached a point of such resilience and capacity that perfection has been practically achieved.  This is definitely consummated at the fourth initiation.  Now, at the end of the great life cycle of the soul, persisting for aeons, the time is nearing when form-taking and experience in the three worlds must end. The disciple finds his group in the Master's Ashram, and consciously and with full understanding, masters death—the long-feared enemy of existence. He discovers that death is simply an effect produced by life and by his conscious will, and is a mode whereby he directs substance and controls matter. This becomes consciously possible because, having developed awareness of two divine aspects—creative activity and love—he is now focussed in the highest aspect and knows himself to be the Will, the Life, the Father, the Monad, the One.

In concluding our study of Rule IV, we are to consider two things:

  1. The method of evoking the Will aspect.

  1. The process of recognising the Life aspect, the Monad, the Father in Heaven.

The result of these two is given in the two closing phrases of this rule:

  1. The lesser wheels must not for aye revolve in time and space. Only the greater Wheel must onward move and turn.

There is one point here that I should like to make because it opens the door to new concepts, even if it is not yet possible for these concepts to be defined so that the mass can understand; even the disciples who read these words will fail truly to comprehend. Only those who have taken the third initiation will rightly interpret. Constantly in all esoteric literature reference is made to the factors of time and space as if there were a basic distinction between the worlds in which these two hold sway and in which the aspirants and initiates of all degrees freely move.  Constantly the aspirant is reminded that time is cyclic in nature and manifestation, and that "space is an entity." It is necessary that there should be some comprehension of these terms if that which the will controls (when evoked) is to penetrate into the knowing consciousness of the thinker.

Space and substance are synonymous terms; substance is the aggregate of atomic lives out of which all forms are built. With this the Treatise on Cosmic Fire largely dealt. This is both an occult and a scientific truism. Substance is, however, a soul concept, and is only truly known to the soul.

Therefore, after the fourth initiation, when the work of the soul is accomplished and the soul body fades out of the picture, only the quality which it has imparted in substance is left as its contribution— individual, group or planetary—to the sumtotal of manifestation. All that remains is a point of light. This point is conscious, immutable and aware of the two extremes of the divine expression: the sense of individual identity and the sense of universality. These are fused and blended in the ONE. Of this ONE the divine Hermaphrodite is the concrete symbol—the union in one of the pairs of opposites, negative and positive, male and female. In the state of being which we call the monadic, no difference is recognised between these two because (if I can bring such ideas down to the level of the intelligence of the aspirant) it is realised that there is no identity apart from universality and no appreciation of the universal apart from the individual realisation, and this realisation of identification with both the part and the whole finds its point of tension in the will-to-be, which is qualified by the will-to-good and developed (from the consciousness angle) by the will-to-know.

These are in truth three aspects of the divine will which exists in its perfection in the solar Logos and finds a medium of expression through the planetary Logos. This will is therefore working out in seven ways, via the living qualities of the seven planetary Logoi Who express Themselves through the seven sacred planets; They are preoccupied with the endeavour of bringing all the forms of life within the orbit of Their influence up to the same measure of recorded recognition and of registered existence. It will be obvious to you, consequently, that on each of the seven sacred planets one aspect of the divine Will will be dominant.

This is the significance of Space—the field wherein states of Being are brought to the stage of recognition. When that stage has been reached and the Knower, the Soul, is fully aware and fully conscious, then there enters in a new factor which also affects space—though in a different way—but which is related to the monadic Life. That factor is Time. Time is related to the will aspect and is dependent upon the dynamic life, self-directed, which produces persistence and which demonstrates persistence in that dynamic focus of intention by periodic or cyclic appearance.

From the angle of the Will or the Father, these appearances in time and through space are so small a part of the experience of the living Entity Whose life is lived on planes other than the physical, emotional or mental, that they are regarded as no life. To understand this, I would remind you again that we must seek to understand the sum total in the light of the part, the Macrocosm in the light of the Microcosm. That is no easy task and is necessarily most limited.

The disciple knows or is learning to know that he is not this or that, but Life Itself. He is not the physical body or its emotional nature; he is not, in the last analysis (a most occult phrase) the mind or that by which he knows. He is learning that that too must be transcended and superseded by intelligent love (only truly possible after the mind has been developed), and he begins to realise himself as the soul. Then, later, comes the awful "moment in time" when, pendant in space, he discovers that he is not the soul. What then is he? A point of divine dynamic will, focussed in the soul and arriving at awareness of Being through the use of form. He is Will, the ruler of time and the organiser, in time, of space. This he does, but ever with the reservation that time and space are the "divine playthings" and can be used or not at will.

We could paraphrase the last two sentences of this fourth rule as follows: The evocation of the will involves identity with the larger purpose. The little will of the little lives must be merged in the larger will of the whole. Individual purpose must be identified with group purpose, which is as much of the purpose of the Whole or the One Life as the little life can grasp at any given point in time and space. It is in this sense, esoterically understood, that time is an event—which philosophy now points out, groping towards an expression of the initiate consciousness.

In the long run, literally when the path of evolution is trodden to its end, what remains will be the divine purpose and the all-enveloping Life as it materialises the plan in time and space. This is the result of the turning of the greater Wheel of life, causing all the lesser wheels—in time and space—also to turn. In the meantime, the human being is first of all driven by desire, then by aspiration towards some visioned goal, then by his selfish will, which reveals to him the nature of the will: persistent application to some purpose, seen as desirable and to which every power is bent. Having exhausted all tangible goals, the inner life forces the man on towards the intangible, and the quality of his will begins to change. He discovers a larger will than his own and begins slowly to identify himself with it, proceeding stage by stage from one realised purpose to another higher one, each step removing him further from his own so-called will and bringing him nearer to an appreciation of the significance of the divine will or purpose.

It might be stated, in an effort to clarify the method whereby this is done, that by the carrying out of the plan the disciple learns the nature of the purpose, but that the purpose itself can only be grasped by one who is developing monadic consciousness. Monadic consciousness is not consciousness as human beings understand it, but is that state of apprehension which is not consciousness or realisation, as the mystic feels it, or identification, as the occultist terms it, but something that appears when all of these three are appreciated and registered in a moment of time within the orbit of space.

Now, having said this, I would ask you if you are much the wiser, or of what profit it is for me to write these words if you understand them not? For two reasons I write. One of my functions and duties (as a Master of the Wisdom) is to anchor ideas in the mind of man and carry down into the realm of words certain emerging concepts so that they may begin to influence the higher level of thinkers. These latter are responsible for precipitating the ideas deep into the human consciousness. Secondly, I write for the generation which will come into active thought expression at the end of this century; they will inaugurate the framework, structure and fabric of the New Age which will start with certain premises which today are the dream of the more exalted dreamers and which will develop the civilisation of the Aquarian Age.

The will aspect of divinity can find expression only through humanity, for the fourth kingdom in nature is intended to be the agent of the will to the three subhuman kingdoms. It was therefore essential that the spirit of inclusiveness and the tendency to spiritual identification should be developed in humanity as a step preparatory to the development of response to divine purpose.  It is absolutely essential that the will-to-good be unfolded by the disciples of the world so that goodwill can be expressed by the rank and file of mankind. The will-to-good of the world knowers is the magnetic seed of the future. The will-to-good is the Father aspect, whilst goodwill is the Mother aspect, and from the relation of these two the new civilisation, based on sound spiritual (but utterly different) lines, can be founded.

I would commend this thought to your consciousness, for it means that two aspects of spiritual work must be nurtured in the immediate future, for on them the more distant hope of happiness and of world peace depends. The New Group of World Servers must be reached and the will-to-good developed in them, and the masses simultaneously must be reached with the message of goodwill. The will-to-good is dynamic, powerful and effective; it is based on realisation of the plan and on reaction to the purpose as sensed by those who are either initiate, and consciously in touch with Shamballa, or disciples who are likewise a part of the Hierarchy but are not yet able to contact the central Purpose or Life. Not yet having taken the third initiation, the monadic vibration is to them largely unknown. It would be just as dangerous for them to be able to reach Shamballa (prior to the third initiation when all personality tendencies are obliterated) as it would be to teach the masses of men today techniques of will which would render their still selfish will effective. The main difficulty would be that the disciples would destroy themselves, whilst the ordinary man would damage himself.

  1. RULE FIVE

Rule V, which we are now purposing to consider, is one of great interest and practicality. I would remind you that one of the new things which the coming era of spiritual expansion will see is the inauguration of something entirely new: Group Initiation. Hitherto, one by one, units of the human family have found their way through the Door of Initiation. If this system is to persist, and considering the vast numbers of souls in and out of incarnation who must eventually achieve the goal—two-thirds of the total in this world cycle—even the greater cycles which include many world cycles would prove too short a time. The space-time schedule of the planetary Logos Himself would be upset, for He has such a schedule for the cycle of His present incarnation. There is a term set for the appearance of His body of manifestation, our planet, just as there is for the human body. He therefore has to work out His plans within a certain time limit, and this factor conditions the experience of all the lives that move within the radius of His expression, including the human kingdom.

It must be remembered also that as humanity develops and more and more people begin to function as souls, the nature of the soul (which is relationship) begins to have an effect; men become larger in their outlook and their vision. The outlook of the separated self vanishes, and group relationship and group interest supersede that intense personal and interior relationship and interest which have made evolving man what he is: first of all an integrated personality, and then a disciple—a candidate for initiation. As more and more disciples come into group realisation it will become increasingly possible for the Hierarchy to admit such disciples in group formation. That is one reason necessitating the re-establishing of the Ancient Mysteries on Earth. That group relation has to be demonstrated in the three worlds and expressed by disciples in their group life upon the physical plane.

Hence the new experiment being undertaken by the Hierarchy of externalising Their Ashrams. This process involves immense difficulty, owing to the astralism, the ambitions and the growing personality influence of so many people. Many groups, under self-seeking leaders, will react to this experiment and will proclaim themselves as Masters with Ashrams and as occupied with training people for initiation. Signs of this can already be seen.

The Hierarchy has been confronted with definite difficulty in this matter, for on the one hand the Masters were faced with the glamour-making tendency and astralism of the majority of people and, secondly, with the rapid advance of the human consciousness into the realm of group relationship, group life, group reactions and group activity. This has brought about the intention of the Hierarchy to train such ready minds and hearts for a united moving forward through the Door of Light onto the Lighted Way. That externalisation has not yet taken place. Tentative experiments are being made with some success and some discouragement.

Two things have therefore been decided upon by the Masters as They face the future of humanity and prepare to take the required steps to meet man's advancing aspiration. I have chosen these two words with care. These two requirements have been demanded of the Hierarchy by Shamballa in order to safeguard the Mysteries and prevent a too premature precipitation of the hierarchical life upon the Earth. Both these requirements are expressed in this fifth Rule.

Rule V

In unison let the group perceive the Triad shining forth, dimming the light of the soul and blotting out the light of form. The macrocosmic Whole is all there is. Let the group perceive that Whole and then no longer use the thought, "My soul and thine."

The first demand made by Shamballa is that the groups being prepared for initiation should consist only of those who are in process of building the antahkarana, the bridge between the Triad and the personality; the second demand is that those being prepared should show some signs of the sense of synthesis.

In the past, during the cycle of mysticism through which all aspirants very properly pass, they were taught to "see the vision"—a vision of the goal, of the beauty to be sought, of the loved one to be known, of liberation to be achieved, of spiritual satisfaction and an opened door to greater wonders. In the occult age which has now definitely dawned, the neophyte will be taught to see the picture whole, to think in the larger terms, to emerge out of the normal separative consciousness into the broad state of awareness that "sees no difference." The goal, or rather the result of the mystic and occult way, is the merging of the vertical way of life with the horizontal way of service, and it is this merging which Shamballa demands should condition the attempt now in process of training those who will together seek initiation, will together pass through the Portal on to the Way, and who can together be presented to the One Initiator as a "unit of Light." This sense of synthesis (which must be increasingly demonstrated as each initiation is taken in group formation) is possible only to those who have bridged the gap between the concrete lower mind and the higher mind or—to word it technically and in the language of academic occult science—between the mental unit and the manasic permanent atom.

The goal of the Probationary Path is made beautifully clear in the fifth Rule as given earlier in Initiation, Human and Solar. It says: “Let the applicant see to it that the solar Angel dims the light of the lunar angels, remaining the sole luminary in the microcosmic sky.”

The soul must be seen by the probationer as the sun of the life. All lesser lights must be put out by the light of the central luminary; all little fires must be obliterated by solar fire. The solar Angel controls the personality life and its forces. This, in the New Age, is the goal of the probationary path and of the applicant for discipleship. Hitherto it has been the goal of all the teaching given anent the Path of Discipleship, but the higher rate of intelligence of the modern applicant warrants a change, and as time goes on the present requirements for disciples, up to and including the second initiation, will be the requirements for the Probationary Path.

The preceding will necessitate a clearer understanding of the Path of Discipleship. On that path, the major teaching given in the future will concern:

  1. The building of the rainbow bridge, the antahkarana.

  1. The nature of the intuition and its development, as it supersedes the mind in its two aspects:  concrete and abstract, lower and higher.

  1. The nature of life as the Monad expresses it.

In these three approaches to truth the new revelation lies hid; it will take the place of the teaching upon the soul for the neophytes and disciples of the world, and the emphasis will be laid—for them—on the life aspect and not so much on the love aspect. The reason for this is that more and more people will be living as souls and therefore expressing love, and for them the nature of life and of monadic experience will constitute the normal next revelation—one that is, however, possible only to those who do attempt to live as souls, who cultivate love or the sense of non-separateness, and who are at least dwelling upon the periphery of the hierarchical world. It would therefore be inevitable that—to those so dwelling or treading the Path of Discipleship—the factors which inspire all hierarchical effort would begin to be dimly apparent and that, slowly, these factors would also assume for them the outlines of a dim and distant goal.

The two parts of this rule are consequently expressive of the new demands for disciples—not applicants. This becomes apparent when you study the two rules: one for applicants and one for disciples. The applicant is referred to the microcosm. The Macrocosm is held before the vision of the disciple.

The two demands are expressed in Rule V as follows, and they will be the two basic requirements for the new schools of occultism.

  1. In unison let the group receive the Triad shining forth, dimming the light of the soul and blotting out the light of form.

This is the demand for the building of the antahkarana which relates the disciple in his personality to the Triad.

  1. The Macrocosmic Whole is all there is. Let the group perceive that Whole and then no longer use the thought, "My soul and thine."

This is the demand for a sense of synthesis which is occult vision and not mystic vision.

In view of all the instructions given earlier in this volume, and in view also of the clarity of the statement made above, there is little that it will be necessary for me to say anent this first demand. The word "demand" which has been used perhaps requires explanation. In considering this subject it should be remembered that admittance to Shamballa and a divine expression in life and service of the first great divine aspect, the will aspect, is the goal held before the members of the Hierarchy. They too are on the way of evolution, and Their goal is to pass through the "eye of the needle," on Their way to the higher evolution.  This higher evolution is that which opens up before a Master of the Wisdom.  

The use of this esoteric term by Christ in The New Testament story gives us a hint as to the nature of the exalted consciousness which He expressed. Faced by the rich young man who possessed so much, Christ indicated that he needed to prepare himself for a great negation and for a step forward.

The true significance of this has never been grasped and lies in the fact that the phrase "rich young man" is in reality a technical term which is frequently applied to an initiate of the third degree, just as the words "little ones" or "little child" apply to an initiate of the first or second degree. This rich young man was rich in his range of awareness, rich in his personality equipment, rich in his aspiration and in his recognition; he was rich as the result of age-long experience and evolutionary development. He is told by the Christ that he must now prepare himself for what is called in Rule V "the Triad shining forth"; he must now prepare for the unfoldment of the monadic consciousness and for the fourth initiation. In that initiation, the causal body, the body wherein the soul experiences and reaps the fruit of experience, must be and will be destroyed. This has to take place before the initiate can enter into the Council Chamber of the Most High and express the will-to-good and the will of God in fulfillment of the purposes of God. The will of this particular "rich young man," initiate though he was, was not yet adequate to the requirements, so he went sadly away; he had to prepare himself for the fourth initiation, the Great Renunciation, the Crucifixion, and thus fit himself to pass through the needle's eye.

There is a symbolic utterance in the Old Commentary which throws light upon the great opportunities which are found in the critical moments in the life of the soul as it experiences incarnation and becomes enriched thereby:

"Within the womb of time and circumscribed by space and limited by darkness—though sustained always by warmth—the life evolves. It develops faculty. It becomes in miniature that which it is. It takes on form and knows the divinity of separation. Such is its goal. Reflect. Knowledge will come.

Beyond the door is greater light and life. It knows itself for what it is. It suffices not unto itself and knows that it is That—part of the Whole, divinely one with others. Reflect. Union will come. Before the rampart of the place of God Himself, a Son Of God comes forth. He stands before the needle's eye and seeks to pass the hindering wall. He is not circumscribed by time or space, but light and life are his. He realises beauty and he knows that That exists.

Instead of time and space and all the rich inducements of the form, he knows himself as rich in love, in knowledge, wisdom, insight, and all the panoply of God (as he can grasp it), except one thing.  Reflect.  Purpose will reveal itself; the Whole will stand revealed and then the soul—loaded with riches and the fruits of labour long—will vanish as the mist and only God, the living One, be left."

There is still another set of phrases dealing with that through which the perfected Sons of God in Their high place must pass when Their work is done on Earth and a greater glory reveals itself ahead. But this I give not. I give only three symbols, which are:

  1. The womb...individualisation...separation. Leading to personality integration and self-realisation.

     Climaxing on the Path of Initiation...the birth of the Christ. Producing intelligent activity.  

     Initiation.

  1. The two-leaved door...initiation...group consciousness. Leading to soul expression.

      Climaxing in the third initiation. Producing loving living. The third initiation.

  1. The eye of the needle..higher evolution..monadic consciousness. Leading to life expression.

      Climaxing in the fifth initiation. Producing purposeful life. Consummation.

Such are the three points of entrance to the three planetary centres: Humanity, Hierarchy and Shamballa.

The moment the initiate or the disciple sees, even dimly, the light of the Spiritual Triad which veils and hides the Central Spiritual Sun, he realises that all other lights—that of the atom of matter, that of the form and that of the soul itself—must inevitably fade out in the stupendous glory and brilliance which emanate from God Himself and which he senses as in process of revelation. He becomes absorbed— intellectually, intuitively, spiritually and finally factually—in that Light.

Here I would remind you that just as the light of the soul revealed to the struggling aspirant a new vision, set for him new goals, enhanced all qualities present in his equipment, and revealed the past, the present and the future of the individual, so this still greater light reveals to the initiate a horizon so vast that it has hitherto escaped his capacity and is yet but possible to vision by an initiate of the third degree, endows him with an occult perception hitherto not realised as existing—a perception which permits him to penetrate increasingly and to cooperate understandingly in the purpose of the Lord of the World. It enables him later to develop the equipment—qualities and gifts of a divine nature—which will eventually enable him to take his place in the Council Chamber at Shamballa and work in full unanimity with the Lords of Karma.

These qualities and gifts concern divine attributes and capacities for which we have as yet no words as they lie beyond the scope of human consciousness, being utterly unknown even to advanced human beings. They only begin to manifest as tendencies between the second and the third initiations, in the same way as the instincts in a small child are, in reality, the germs of later intellectual attitudes and activities. It is needless, therefore, for me to enlarge upon them; unless you are an initiate of the third degree, my words would be meaningless to you and would convey naught. The clue lies for you in understanding the three words—Happiness, Joy, Bliss. Do you, as you speak of bliss, understand wherein it differs from happiness and joy? Bliss is associated with complete Being; it concerns the interior attitude of the Whole.

As the individual disciple builds the rainbow bridge, the antahkarana, and as a group of disciples build the group antahkarana, they make possible the "Triadal perception" referred to above. When the disciple has flung one strand of living light (through the power of magnetic love) across the space separating the Triad and the personality, he discovers that he is a part of a group. This group recognition—faulty and unintelligently expressed at first—is the factor which enables him to pass, along the anchored thread, into the Ashram of a Master.

From the angle of the old teaching, the Ashram of the Master and the focus of the Hierarchy were on the higher levels of the mental plane. Today, that is not so. They are on the plane of spiritual love, of the intuition and of buddhi. The Hierarchy is both retreating towards the higher centre of Shamballa, and at the same time advancing towards the lower centre, Humanity. Both these activities have been made possible by man himself; the growing intuitive perception of humanity, in its higher brackets, enables him to function upon the Path of Discipleship and on higher levels than ever before. This the Hierarchy recognises. The growing aspiration of the masses is also drawing the Masters closer to humanity than ever before. This is an instance of the ability of the initiate consciousness to function on initiate levels and also in the three worlds simultaneously. Of this the dual activity of the mind is a symbol, acting as it does as the common sense and so dealing with all matters in the three worlds, and as the spiritual mind at the same time, dealing with all matters connected with the soul, with light and illumination.

The second demand, that the sense of synthesis should be the goal of the training given to applicants in the New Age, is a direct evidence of the new Shamballa contact, because synthesis is an attribute of the divine will and the outstanding quality of Deity. It was inevitable that intelligence and love should be evolutionary objectives on the planet and the first two divine aspects to be developed, for they are qualities of the will; they make the manifestation of the divine will possible; they guarantee its intelligent application and its magnetic power to draw to itself all that is needed for the expression or the manifestation of the divine envisaged purpose, visualised synthetically, and motivated, implemented, engineered and made possible by the dynamic aspect of the same will.

It is the sense of synthesis, putting it very simply, which will be the goal of all the educational movements, once the New Age idealism is firmly established. Physical coordination, personal integrity (which involves primarily the control and later the negation of the astral body), and personality integration will be the essential first steps. To this will succeed processes whereby the fusion of the personality with the soul, of the lower self with the higher Self, and of form with the divine Dweller in the form will follow next. Then the truly esoteric phase of the educational process will be attempted when the earlier steps or stages have been satisfactorily grasped and there is indication of some measure of real success. By that time the school of the Mysteries and the Halls of preparation for initiation will be generally recognised by the thinking people and believed in by the expectant masses.

The clue to all this esoteric work demanded by Shamballa is to be found in the development of the Art of Visualisation. Through visualisation, three expressions of the human consciousness will become possible:

  1. The antahkarana can be built and the shining of the Triad be definitely seen. Such will be the new vision—an outcome of the development of the sense of vision.

  1. Groups, large wholes and major syntheses will also be visualised, and this will lead to a definite expansion of consciousness. Thus the sense of synthesis will be unfolded.

  1. All creative art will be fostered by this training, and the new art of the future in all departments of creativity will be rapidly developed as the training proceeds. The unfoldment of the sense of vision and of the sense of synthesis, through visualisation, will lead to a sense of livingness in form.

  1. RULE SIX

A superficial reading of Rule VI would give the impression that it is a simple statement as to the universality of Life, and also that it embodies an enunciation of the basic fact of hylozoism.

Rule VI

Let the group know that life is one and naught can ever take or touch that life. Let the group know the vivid, flaming, drenching life that floods the fourth when the fifth is known. The fifth feeds on the fourth. Let then the group—merged in the fifth—be nourished by the sixth and seventh, and realise that all the lesser rules are rules in time and space and cannot hold the group. It onward moves in life.

I find it extremely difficult to express the significance of this Rule in such a way that it will convey meaning to you, and this for two reasons: First, the idea of the One Life is so prevalent, and so customary and trite an unrealised truth, that it registers on ears with very little effect. Secondly, the whole story of life—which is purpose, divine will, and absolute determination—and the eternal planning of the Lord of the World is so hard of comprehension that we have as yet no words in the language of any nation which can express it.

This sixth Rule is the polar opposite of the rule as it was given to applicants. There, if you will refer to my exegesis upon that rule in Initiation, Human and Solar, you will find that the objective of that rule was physical purification with the emphasis upon the need for a vegetarian diet at a certain stage of the preparatory process. The reasons for such a discipline were two in number: purification and the necessity for the applicant (at that stage) to refrain from sharing in the benefits incident to the so-called "taking of life." But, can one take life? I think not. Life IS. Naught in heaven or on earth can touch or affect it. This is a point oft forgotten.

The rule as given to applicants consequently concerns their ability to accept and adhere to a self-imposed discipline. Through the means of that discipline, the control of the physical and astral natures are demonstrated by the applicant to himself, and the effect of the discipline is to reveal to him certain inevitable and basic weaknesses, such as control of the animal nature, the powerful imposition of desire, a sense of superiority, of pride and separativeness.  His ability to sustain the discipline and his appreciation of himself for so doing, plus a sense of superiority to those who are not so disciplined, are all indicative of essential weaknesses. His fanaticism, latent or expressed, emerges in his consciousness with clarity, and—when he is sincere—he is conscious of having brought about a measure of physical purity; but at the same time, he is left with the awareness that he perhaps may be starting with the outer and the obvious when he should be beginning with the inner and with that which is not so easily contacted or expressed. This is a great and most important lesson.

It is also an interesting illustration of the technique of the Masters, whereby They permit a fallacy to remain uncorrected (because it is originated by the disciple himself and must be dissipated by him also) and the use of language which conveys a wrong impression. By so doing, the user of the language discovers eventually his erroneous approach to truth. Life cannot be taken in the spiritual sense. This error or mistake in the approach of truth enables men and women upon the Probationary Path to demonstrate the earnestness and sincerity of their aspiration by the discipline of substituting the produce "of the second," and to refrain from sustaining life on the produce "of the third." By sacrificing the life of the second kingdom in nature (to use the applicant's own misstatements) and by nourishing the physical body thereby, the probationary disciple does succeed in ending the grip or potency of the physical nature, and that is always helpful. He as yet does not know that he is adhering to lesser "rules in time and space," and that once he has demonstrated to himself that he can hold them and obey them, he is then freed from them and needs them no more. The disciple and the candidate for initiation knows that life is one, whether it takes form in the second kingdom or in the third or the fourth; he knows that the life in him is one with the life in the first kingdom, the mineral; he learns too that life is impregnable; that it cannot be taken or destroyed but "passes on" from form to form, from experience to experience, until the perfect will of God is expressed through life.

The true disciple does not need vegetarianism or any of the physical disciplines, for the reason that none of the fleshly appetites have any control over him. His problem lies elsewhere, and it is a waste of his time and energy to keep his eye focussed on "doing the right things physically," because he does them automatically and his spiritual habits offset all the lower physical tendencies; automatically these developed habits enable him to surmount the appeal of those desires which work out in the fulfillment of lower desire. No one is accepted into the circle of the Ashram (which is the technical name given to the status of those who are on the eve of initiation or who are being prepared for initiation) whose physical appetites are in any danger of controlling him. This is a statement of fact. This applies particularly and specifically to those preparing for the first initiation. Those preparing for the second initiation have to demonstrate their freedom from the slavery of ideas, from a fanatical reaction to any truth or spiritual leader, and from the control of their aspiration which—through the intensity of its application—would sacrifice time, people and life itself to the call of the Initiator—or rather, to be correct, to what they believe to be His call.

I would point out that the third initiation is approached from a level tableland of experience and of consciousness, and not from the heights of aspiration, or from fanatical sacrifice, or from the standpoint of a devotion which handicaps the service of the devotee and of the Master he seeks to serve. He knows, as a candidate for initiation, that:

  1. Life is one and naught can ever take or touch that life.

His sense of proportion as to form becomes adjusted. He is forward-looking towards the soul, and not backward-looking towards the form nature. Some very sincere devotees and promising applicants are so preoccupied with form and its disciplining that they have no real time to give to soul expansion. They are so interested in their reactions to their self-imposed discipline or to their capacity to conform or their failure to accept the discipline, that the spiritual truths—seeking entrance into their hearts—fail to make such an entrance. Temperance in all things, the wise use of all sustaining forms and self-forgetfulness are the hallmark of the disciple, but not of the beginner. Many disciples today who should be functioning in the Hall of Wisdom are still fanatically working in the Hall of Knowledge and are still so earnest over the physical disciplines that the disciplines of the soul are ignored. I would ask you to reflect on this. Applicants have to learn the significance of the words of Rule VI for disciples, "the lesser rules are rules in time and space and cannot hold the group."

I wonder if you can grasp the type of consciousness which distinguishes the Hierarchy, even if you are only able to do so imaginatively and theoretically. They "onward move in life." They work in the realm of life energy; the form seems to Them something which They have definitely left behind, and the consciousness of appeal or rejection of the form nature and hold is to Them only a memory of a distant battle ground where the victory then won has been forgotten and the gains of victory are so far behind that they lie well below the threshold of consciousness. Broadly and generally speaking, workers in the ranks of the Hierarchy (I did not say "with the Hierarchy") are divided into two main groups: those who are working with the unfoldment of the initiate consciousness in the disciples of the world, and those of a more advanced degree who are working with the life aspect and its expression in the lives of the world initiates. Working disciples (who are working in cooperation with the Hierarchy) are also working in two major divisions: Those who are dealing with applicants and are seeking to see the imposition of the physical disciplines, and with the impartation of certain minor values so that beginners may grasp the point that they have reached. There are those also who are working to substitute understanding and service for physical discipline and the earlier, inevitable, selfish ends.

Let me repeat: the physical disciplines are of value in the beginning stage and impart a sense of proportion and an awareness of defects and of limitations. These have their place in time and space, and that is all. Once the world of the soul is entered, the disciple uses all forms wisely, with understanding of their purpose and with freedom from excess; he is not preoccupied with them or fundamentally interested in them. His eyes are off himself and are fixed on the world of true values. He has no sense of self-interest, because a group awareness is rapidly superseding his individual consciousness.

  1. Let the group know the vivid, flaming, drenching life that floods the fourth when the fifth is known.

The above words are of prime importance to those who would and can profit by what I am seeking to convey, as I interpret—as far as may be—these Rules. The knowing of the fifth kingdom in nature through the medium of the consciousness of the fourth and the sacrifice of the fourth kingdom to the fifth, of the human being to the soul and of humanity to the kingdom of God, is the parallel (on a higher turn of the spiral) of the sacrifice of the third kingdom, the animal kingdom, to the fourth, the human kingdom. Thus it proceeds down the scale—sacrifice always of the lower to the higher.

It therefore behooves the individual disciple to decide whether he is an applicant, and consequently to be controlled by the "rules in time and space," or a candidate for initiation who knows that life is one and that the form is of no material significance, except as a field of experience for the soul.

We now come to the most important part of this particular rule; it conveys the key to the immediate goal for those who have attained a certain measure of understanding. The words of importance are:

  1. Let then the group—merged in the fifth—be nourished by the sixth and seventh.

In other words: "Then let the group—which is identified with the soul—find its sustenance and vitality by the inflow of the intuition and of the spiritual will, emanating from the Spiritual Triad." There are, of course, other meanings, but this is the most practical for disciples. A larger but similar concept lies in the realisation that the human family, the fourth kingdom in nature, is absorbed by the fifth or by the kingdom of God and (when this is the case) can become increasingly en rapport with the sixth and seventh kingdoms.  To these kingdoms no names have as yet been given, because the possibility of their existence is only now just beginning faintly to penetrate into the consciousness of the disciple and the initiate. The sixth kingdom is that of the "overshadowing Triads"—that aggregation of liberated Lives of which the higher initiates in the Hierarchy are a part; They are to that spiritual group what the New Group of World Servers is to Humanity. I know not how else to express this truth to you.

The seventh kingdom in nature is that of the Lives Who participate in full capacity of understanding with the group of Beings Who are the nucleus of the Council at Shamballa. Around the Lord of the World this group pivots; Their consciousness and state of being is only dimly understood by the most advanced Members of the Hierarchy, and the relation of these Lives to the Lord of the World is similar, and yet fundamentally different, to the relation of the Members of the Hierarchy to the three Great Lords—the Christ, the Manu and the Mahachohan. Through these three Lords pours the energy which streams from Shamballa, transmitting the purpose and motivating the plan of Sanat Kumara—His Life Plan. What you call "the Plan" is the response of the Hierarchy to the inflaming purposeful will of the Lord of the World. Through Sanat Kumara, the Ancient of Days (as He is called in the Bible), flows the unknown energy of which the three divine Aspects are the expression. He is the Custodian of the will of the Great White Lodge on Sirius, and the burden of this "cosmic intention" is shared by the Buddhas of Activity and those Members of the Great Council Who are of so elevated a consciousness and vibration that only once a year (through Their emissary, the Buddha) is it safe for Them to contact the Hierarchy.

I am seeking only to point to a wider horizon than that usually registered by disciples and I use these broad analogies to expand your point of view. By so doing I can convey to the enlightened person a sense of synthesis, of purposeful planning and of planetary integrity. This great spiritual structure of Being, of Life and of Direction is something that the disciples and initiates of the world need—at this time—in their effort to stand steady under the pressure of world events, and in their determination to cooperate unwaveringly with the moves and plans made by the world Directors, that "Society of illumined and organised Minds" which is known under the name of the Hierarchy. It is illumination and consequent organisation which is needed profoundly at this time.

You will see, therefore, the significance of the teaching now being given out anent the building of the antahkarana. It is only through this bridge, this thread, that the disciple can mount on to that stage of the ladder of evolution which will lead him out of the three worlds, which will bring the personality into rapport with the Spiritual Triad, and which will finally lead the Members of the Hierarchy (when Their term of service is completed) on to the Path of the Higher Evolution. The antahkarana is built by aspirants and disciples and initiates of the seven ray types, and is therefore a sevenfold woven thread; it constitutes the first stage of the Path of the Higher Evolution. It is to that Path what experience in the mineral kingdom of the Life of God is to that same Life when it reaches the fourth or human kingdom. You can see, therefore, how significant is the coming Science of Comparison; not yet has this science of comparative analysis been turned into a definitely recognised line of approach to truth. The Law of Analogy is the key which unlocks the understanding.

Something of the quality and the revelatory power of the intuition is known by all disciples; it constitutes at times (from its very rarity) a major "spiritual excitement." It produces effects and stimulation; it indicates future receptivity to dimly sensed truths and is allied—if you could but realise it—with the entire phenomena of prevision. A registration of some aspect of intuitional understanding is an event of major importance in the life of the disciple who is beginning to tread the Path to the Hierarchy. It provides testimony, which he can recognise, of the existence of knowledges, wisdom and significances of which the intelligentsia of humanity are not yet aware; it guarantees to him the unfolding possibility of his own higher nature, a realisation of his divine connections and the possibility of his ultimate highest spiritual attainment; it steadily supersedes soul knowledge, and the energy pouring in to his consciousness from the Spiritual Triad—particularly the energy of the sixth and seventh spheres of activity—is the specific and particular energy which finally brings about the destruction of the causal body, the annihilation of the Temple of Solomon, and the liberation of the Life.

Then that which in time and space has been termed the soul can "onward move in life." Evolution as we now understand it ceases; yet evolutionary unfoldment proceeds along new lines which are based upon the past but which produce very different results to those sensed even by the advanced disciple in his highest moments. A new life-expression appears which moves onward freed from all form yet subject still to limitations "within the circle of influence of the greater Life," but not limited by life within the many forms which progress, surrounded by that circle, that divine ring-pass-not. There is still the broad confining sweep of the purpose and the life-intent of the planetary Logos, but within that periphery and sphere of activity the Triads move with perfect freedom. Their onward push towards the higher states of Being is carried out in conformity with the life urge of the One in Whom they live and move and have their being. You will note, therefore, that these words in reality cover or deal with life processes and not with form building or the experience in forms, as usually understood. A consideration of these at present inaccessible truths may serve to inspire your minds, evoke your intuition and give you vision and increased spiritual perception.

  1. RULE SEVEN

The Rule which is our theme for consideration at this time is one of deep significance and esoteric interest; it is concerned with the life of Shamballa and with the purposes of the Great Council. This rule is also one of rare beauty and extraordinary implications, and it offers me the opportunity to enlarge upon a subject little known or understood by any esotericist in the average esoteric group. The reason for this is that it is only as the new cycle draws closer—as it is drawing today—that the new and fuller teaching, the greatly extended horizon and the tremendously enhanced perception of the spiritual observer and worker become possible and apparent.

Very much has been given out during the past one hundred years anent the Masters, and (as we are considering the subject of initiation and of preparation for that great transitional experience) it is necessary to understand somewhat the nature of Those with Whom the disciple has to associate, and the kind of world and of consciousness in which They live and move and have Their being. The fact of the Hierarchy is to many thinkers an established fact; the hypothesis that there may be a Hierarchy is a widespread recognition. Information concerning its grades, its modes of working and its objectives are now common property; much has been accepted and much proved by those who believe this teaching.

Before proceeding to a discussion of Rule VII, however, I would like to spend a moment studying some of the effects of this steadily growing fund of knowledge. It has become the possession of the many and not only of the rare and discreet esotericist and occult student; this teaching has now seeped down into the consciousness of the masses and is there producing curiosity, relief and hope, speculation and cynical laughter, conscious spiritual effort or sustained ridicule—according to the type of mind, the sensitivity to truth or the crass credulity of the recipient. But the knowledge, belief and hope in the existence of a planetary Hierarchy has today leavened the entire mass of human thinking in a far wider and deeper manner than perhaps the most optimistic suspect; herein lies the hope of the world, and here is to be found also a fertile field for spiritual work during the coming decades. For this all disciples must prepare.

The rules whereby the Hierarchy may be reached are already well known to the aspirants of the world; they must become equally well known to the average person; the objectives of the hierarchical work must be emphasised and the nature of the divine Plan unfolded so that purpose and goal may be presented to humanity; the synthesis of the chain of hierarchical Existences—from the smallest atom of matter up to and including the Lord of Life Himself—must be unfolded; the essential and spiritual interdependence of all and the interrelation of every unit of divine life must be proved. This will eventually lead to that established unity of effort which will express itself in the merging of the fourth and the fifth kingdoms in nature, and to the establishment of that brotherhood which will constitute the germ or the seed of the coming manifestation of the Hierarchy as the Heart of God (directly related to the Heart of the Sun) in physical expression.  

The entire field of the world—meaning by that phrase all the kingdoms in nature in united inner and outer relationship—will be the medium of recognised spiritual experience and also the field of expression of certain divine qualities and aspects which have hitherto been in quiescent abeyance. What these qualities are, what divine aspects are awaiting precipitation, and which divine purposes are latent in that field of waiting expectancy, I cannot yet reveal or even indicate. The times are not yet ripe.

A great upheaval in all the kingdoms in nature has characterised this day and generation; a stupendous destruction of all forms of divine life and in every kingdom has been the outstanding note of this upheaval. Our modern civilisation has received a death blow from which it will never recover, but which will be recognised some day as the "blow of release" and as the signal for that which is better, new and more suitable for the evolving spirit, to make its appearance. Great and penetrating energies and their evoked forces have met in a conflict which has, figuratively speaking, elevated the mineral kingdom into the skies and which has brought down fire from heaven. I am talking to you factually and not just symbolically. The bodies of men, women and children, as well as of animals, have been destroyed; the forms of the vegetable kingdom and the potencies of the mineral kingdom have been disintegrated, distributed and devastated. The coherent life of all the planetary forms has been temporarily rendered incoherent. As an ancient prophecy has put it: "No true united Sound goes out from form to form, from life to life. Only a cry of pain, a demand for restitution and an invocation for relief from agony, despair and fruitless effort goes out from here to There."

All this upheaval of the "soil" of the world—spiritual, psychological and physical—all this disruption of the forms and of the familiar contours of our planetary life had to take place before there could come the emergence of the Hierarchy into the public consciousness; all this had to do its work upon the souls of men before the New Age could come in, bringing with it the Restoration of the Mysteries, and the rehabilitation of the peoples of the earth. The two go together. This is one of the major points which I am seeking to make. The disruption, disintegration and the completely chaotic conditions existing for the past five hundred years within all the kingdoms of nature have at last worked their way out into paralleling physical conditions.  This is good and desirable; it marks the prelude to a better building of a better world, the construction of more adequate forms of life and of more correct human attitudes, plus a sounder orientation to reality. The best is yet to be.

Everything is being rapidly brought to the surface—the good and the bad, the desirable and the undesirable, the past and the future (for the two are one); the plough of God has nearly accomplished its work; the sword of the spirit has severed an evil past from the radiant future, and both are seen as contributory in the Eye of God; our material civilisation will be seen as giving place rapidly to a more spiritual culture; our church organisations, with their limiting and confusing theologies, will soon give place to the Hierarchy, with its emerging teaching—clear, factual, intuitive and non-dogmatic.

The Hierarchy has been invoked and its Members are ready for a great "act of evocation," of response to the invoking sound of humanity and of a definite (though relatively temporary) "act of orientation." This will force the Hierarchy, of its own freewill, to turn towards a new and more intimate type of relation with humanity. That period of orientation will end when a powerful, earthly Hierarchy will factually, externally and in reality hold sway on earth, working in all the kingdoms of nature and thus bringing about (in truth) the expression of the divine Plan. This plan is implemented through the medium of the senior Members of the Hierarchy, Who invoke the "Lights which carry out the Will of God"; They are Themselves invoked by the Light-Bearers, the Masters; They again, in Their turn, are invoked by the aspirants and disciples of the world. Thus is the chain of Hierarchy only a life line, along which travel the love and life of God, from Him to us and from us to Him.

Rule VII

For Applicants: Let the disciple turn his attention to the enunciating of those sounds which echo in the hall where walks the Master. Let him not sound the lesser notes which awaken vibration within the halls of Maya.

For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group life emit the Word of invocation and thus evoke response within those distant Ashrams where move the Chohans of the race of men. They are no longer men as are the Masters, but, having passed beyond that lesser stage, have linked themselves with the Great Council in the highest Secret Place. Let the group sound a dual chord, reverberating in the halls where move the Masters but finding pause and prolongation within those radiant halls where move the "Lights which carry out the Will of God."

Of real importance, though relatively small, are two contrasts. These emerge with clarity if you compare the instructions given to applicants for discipleship and those given to initiates. The applicant (or young disciple) is addressed as an individual and is told to give forth "those sounds" which will be heard by the Master in His Ashram—for that is the true significance of the words. The initiate functions in a group (always in a group) and has developed or is rapidly developing group consciousness; in unison with his group and as an integral conscious part of it, the Word must be enunciated; this is not a medley of sounds, but is one clear Word of invocation. You need to remember that the disciple is occupied in resolving the many sounds into the Word; when he has done this, his individual approach to reality terminates, and he begins to act with his group where all activity is concerned.

This is a point of major importance for the newer type of disciple to grasp. In the past, the emphasis has been on what the individual initiate had to do in order to fit himself to take initiation, and so become a Master of the Wisdom and a member of the planetary Hierarchy. In the coming new cycle the emphasis will be upon group work and activity, upon group initiation and group approach to the Center of Life. The required mode of life and the needed individual eliminations and adjustments are now so well known (theoretically, at least) that they should have dropped below the threshold of consciousness and should consequently be automatic in their effects. This should also provide a steady inducement to thought which will make the initiate what he ought to be, because his conscious mind is free for group functioning.  This is a concept which must be increasingly cultivated; "As a man thinketh in his heart, so he is." The lower mind should be the organ of heart expression and be as unconscious in its functioning as is the rhythm of the heart itself—the physical heart. The higher mind is intended to become increasingly the field of the initiate's effort, and hence the constant need for him to build the antahkarana.

In this Rule we are therefore dealing with the work to be done by a group of pledged disciples and initiates; they are learning together to make an approach to Shamballa (involving the Will element); this is as much a goal of the Hierarchy as approach to the Hierarchy is the goal of advanced humanity. It concerns the interrelation of great centres of force. This is a point which esoteric students should attempt to grasp for it completes the planetary chain of Hierarchy and throws a light upon the Way of the Higher Evolution.

Great movements and progressions have always taken place upon the subjective side of life; it is these subjective activities which have made it hard for disciples to grasp the truth and arrive at some true realisation of the subjective situation which ever exists between the Hierarchy and Shamballa. The energies concerned are so subtle, and the Beings involved are so advanced and so highly developed (even from the angle of the initiate of the third degree), that it is well-nigh impossible for the teachings (which I seek to give) to be worded in such a manner that they become comprehensible. All that I can do is to make certain statements which (from the standpoint of those I teach) are not verifiable; they have to be accepted on trust and with the reservation that time and the point of view of the individual disciple will later prove their truth—or their non-truth.

The objective of all training given to the disciple is to shift his conscious awareness from the point where he is to levels which are higher than those in the three worlds of definitely human evolution; the intention is to teach him to function on those planes of conscious contact which are as yet so subjective that he only accepts them as existent in theory. The trained initiate knows that they have to become his natural habitat, and that eventually he has to relegate the ordinary and normal human experience to the three worlds of daily expression. These become eventually the worlds that exist below the threshold of consciousness; they are relegated to the realm of the subconscious—recoverable consciously, if necessary for right service of humanity, but as much below the threshold of consciousness as are the ordinary emotional reactions of the average man. These are always recoverable (as modern psychoanalysis has demonstrated) and can become capable of expression and of formulation into conditioning concepts—thus actuating mental perception if deemed of adequate importance. However, it should be borne in mind that the greater part of the emotional life of the disciple must become increasingly subconscious, just as the physical plane life of the normal, healthy human being is entirely automatic and thus subconscious. When the disciple has striven to expand his consciousness, when he has learnt to stabilise his consciousness in the Spiritual Triad, then he becomes part of a great and constant hierarchical effort which strives upwards towards the "Place of Clear Electric Light," to which the clear cold light of the reason is the first key to the first door.

There are three doors into Shamballa, speaking figuratively:

  1. There is the door of the reason, of pure perception of truth. Christ gave the clue to this teaching when He said "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life." Of that Way we know much, because upon the Way a vast body of teaching has been given, and that teaching, if followed, brings a man into the Hierarchy. He then becomes a factual part of the hierarchical membership. Of that Truth, we know (as aspirants) relatively very little. Truth—as we understand it during the early treading of the Path of Discipleship—is concerned with great verities which are (from the insight of the Enlightened Ones) only the ABC of life.

        These truths are:

These four expressions of truth will be found to convey all the knowledge with which the initiate must stand equipped when he climbs the Mount of Transfiguration at the time of the third initiation. They have given him a spiritual perception of the Plan.

Of that Life, we know nothing whatsoever. The contemplation of its significance belongs to Those Who can move at will within the "precincts of the Lord of Life"—in Shamballa itself. All we can know about it is its lowest step. This enables us to study the impulse or instinct which enables all forms of life to function, which embodies the principles of responsiveness to contacts and to environment, and which embodies itself in the breath of life; this is also related to the air in some mysterious manner, and also to fire. More anent this subject it would be useless for me to say.

  1. There is also the door of the will. This is a penetrating power which relates Plan to Purpose and which has in it the faculty of coherent persistence. The reason for this persistence is that it is not dependent upon the content of the form—whether it is the form of an atom, of a man or of a planet— but upon a vital dynamic and immutable purpose, latent in the consciousness of the planetary Being Who, "having pervaded this entire universe with a fragment" of Himself, REMAINS—greater, more inscrutable and "firmer in intent" than any of His creations, even the most advanced and the closest to Him. Only those have clear perception of His divine purpose who do not belong to our earth humanity at all; these are the Lives who came with Him to this planet when He came, and Who remain with Him as "the prisoners of loving intention" until the last "weary pilgrim has found his way home."

This spiritual will is something of which humanity knows nothing; it is hidden and veiled by the self-will of the individual and the group will of the soul. Through both of these experiences the human being moves until his individual will is developed and grounded, focussed and reoriented, and his group will is unfolded so that it includes and swallows up the dedicated, conscious, individual will. When this fusion has taken place (at the third initiation) a great revelation unfolds itself, and for the first time the initiate senses and then contacts the universal will; from that moment the initiate says, "Father, not my will but Thine be done." Just a little of what that will includes may emerge as we study this seventh rule and some of the succeeding rules.

  1. I can find no words to express the nature of the third door. Let us, in default of a better term, call it the door of the monadic sense of essential duality. Body and life, soul and personality, the Spiritual Triad and its expression, the Christ in incarnation—all these dualities have played their part. Man has passed from one expansion of consciousness to another. Now he comes to the final duality of spirit and matter, prior to their resolution into something to which the terms "isolated unity" and "universal synthesis" give only faint and inadequate clues. To the development of this system of identification the initiate of the degree of Master of the Wisdom, and also (on a higher turn of the spiral) of the degree of the Christ, are focussing all Their efforts. Up to the fourth initiation, the term "system of expansions" would seem illuminating; after that great initiation, the term "system of identification" would appear more appropriate.

When the initiate has passed through the three doors, symbolically speaking, he then faces all life, all events, all pre-determinations, all wisdom, all activity and all that the future may hold of service and progress from the angle of the pure reason (infallible and immutable), of true spiritual will (completely identified with the purpose of the planetary Logos), and of the highest possible focussed relation. The mystery of relationship becomes revealed to him. Then the entire scheme of evolution and of the intention of the One in Whom he lives and moves and has his being becomes clear to him; he has no more to learn within this planetary scheme; he has become universal in his attitude to all forms of life, and is also identified with the "isolated unity" of Sanat Kumara.

Few of the great Lives Who form the inner group of the Council Chamber at Shamballa are now of greater advancement than he; the "Supernal Three," the "Radiant Seven," the "Lives embodying the forty-nine Fires," the "Buddhas of Activity," and certain "Eternal Spirits" from such centres of dynamic spiritual life as Sirius, or from the constellation which at any one time forms a triangle with our Sun and Sirius" and a Representative from Venus are of greater—far greater—advancement. Otherwise, all initiates of the sixth degree, and a few of the Masters Who have undergone specialised training because They are upon the first Ray of Will or Power (the ray conditioning Shamballa itself), form part of the Great Council. Many Masters and Chohans, however, after serving upon the planet in various capacities, working with the Law of Evolution, pass out of our planetary life altogether.

All the above information concerning the Lives which are far in advance of the disciples of the world contains little of moment for you, except in so far as it falls into a diagrammatic pattern of our planetary life and purpose, and enabling you, therefore, to get a faint glimpse of a synthetic theme and purpose to which all evolving lives must and will eventually conform.

It must ever be borne in mind that the great theme of LIGHT underlies our entire planetary purpose. The full expression of perfect LIGHT, occultly understood, is the engrossing life-purpose of our planetary Logos. Light is the great and obsessing enterprise in the three worlds of human evolution; everywhere men rate the light of the sun as essential to healthy living; some idea of the human urge to light can be grasped if you consider the brilliance of the physically engendered light in which we live when night arrives, and compare it with the mode of lighting the streets and homes of the world prior to the discovery of gas, and later of electricity. The light of knowledge, as the reward of educational processes, is the incentive behind all our great schools of learning in every country in the world and is the goal of much of our world organisation; the terminology of light controls even our computation of time.

The mystery of electricity is unfolding gradually before our rapt eyes and the electrical nature of man is being slowly proven and will later demonstrate that, throughout the human structure and form, man is composed primarily of light atoms, and that the light in the head (so familiar to esotericists) is no fiction or figment of wishful thinking or of a hallucinated imagination, but is definitely brought about by the junction or fusion of the light inherent in substance itself and the light of the soul.

It will be found that this will be capable of scientific proof. It will also be shown that the soul itself is light, and that the entire Hierarchy is a great centre of light, causing the symbology of light to govern our thinking, our approach to God, and enabling us to understand somewhat the meaning of the words of Christ "I am the Light of the world." These words carry meaning to all true disciples and present them with an analogous goal which they define to themselves as that of finding the light, appropriating the light, and themselves becoming light-bearers. The theme of light runs through all the world Scriptures; the idea of enlightenment conditions all the training given to the youth of the world (limited though the application of this idea may be), and the thought of more light governs all the inchoate yearnings of the human spirit.

We have not yet carried the concept up to the Centre of Life where dwells the Ancient of Days, the Eternal Youth, the Lord of the World, Sanat Kumara, Melchizedek—God. Yet from that Centre streams what has been called the Light of Life, the Light Supernal. These are empty words as yet until we know, as trained initiates, that light is a symptom and an expression of Life, and that essentially, occultly and in a most mysterious way the terms, Light and Life, are interchangeable within the limits of the planetary ring-pass-not. Beyond those limits—who knows? Light can be regarded as a symptom, a reaction to the meeting and consequent fusion of spirit and matter.

Therefore, where that great point of fusion and of solar crisis (for that is what it is, even when producing a planetary crisis) appears in time and space, light also immediately appears and of such intensity that only those who know the light of the soul, and who can bear the hierarchical light can be trained to enter into and form part of the light of Shamballa and walk in those "radiant halls where move the Lights which carry out the Will of God."

To carry the concept a little nearer home: only when the will of the personality and the will of the soul come together—evoked by love—does the light of the soul dominate the material light of the personality. This is a statement of importance. Only when the will of the Monad and the will of the Hierarchy of souls meet and blend in the "upper brackets" can the radiant light of Life dominate the blended lights of Humanity and of the Hierarchy. Faintly this group fusion and junction can be seen to be taking place.

It is also the first touch of the radiance of Shamballa which is bringing the universal revelation of evil, a radiance which is now producing the world unrest and which has brought about the lining up of good and evil; this touch of radiance is the conditioning factor behind what is called post-war planning and the ideas of reconstruction and of world rebuilding which are dominating the best human thinking at this time.

It should be carefully borne in mind that evil (cosmic evil or the source of planetary evil) is much closer to Shamballa than it is to Humanity. The Great Lives there move entirely free from glamour; Their vision is one of extreme simplicity; They are concerned only with the great and simple duality of spirit and matter, and not with the many forms which the fusion of these two brings into being. The domination of spirit (and its reflection, soul) by matter is what constitutes evil and this is true whether the statement is applied to the development of the individual or of the group. The "Lights which carry out the will of God" move free from the spell of evil. The Light in which They move safeguards Them, and Their Own innate and inherent radiance repels evil.  But They "move alongside the evil to which all lesser forms are prone"; They are part of a great observing Group which "moves forward in time and space"; its members watch the great war and conflict proceed on Earth between the Forces of Light and the Forces of Evil. They have let loose upon Earth the Forces of Light, whilst the Forces of Evil are inherent in substance itself—of which all the many forms of life are constructed.

At this time, the work of the Great Council at Shamballa, working until now through the Hierarchy, is with the life within the form; They have to proceed with the utmost caution as They thus work, because these Lights know that the danger of premature direct contact with humanity, and of consequent overstimulation, are great. One of the causes of the present cataclysm is the fact that humanity was deemed capable of taking and receiving a "touch from Shamballa," without stepping it down via the Hierarchy, as has hitherto been the custom. The determination to apply this touch (which is in the nature of a great experiment) was made in 1825, when the Great Council had its usual centennial meeting. The results you know; they are working out before your eyes.  The industrial movement began to take shape one hundred years ago and received a great impetus from this touch. The evil in nations—aggression, greed, intolerance and hate—was aroused as never before, and two world wars occurred, one of which is still raging (written October 1943). Paralleling this was an uprising of good, again in response to the divine "touch," resulting in the growth of understanding, the spread of idealism, the purification of our educational systems and the inauguration of reforms in every department of human life. All has been speeded up and little such growth was seen on a worldwide scale prior to 1825. The knowledge of the Hierarchy is also spreading over the earth; the facts anent discipleship and initiation are becoming common property; humanity has consequently moved onward into a greater measure of light. Good and evil stand out in clearer focus; light and dark are in a more brilliant juxtaposition; issues of right and wrong are appearing with cleared definition, and humanity as a whole sees the great problems of righteousness and love, of sin and separateness upon a worldwide scale.

The old age and the coming new age, old rhythms of thought and new approaches to truth and consequent new and better ways of life are presented with clarity to the minds of men. The guarantee of the success of the experiment started more than a century ago is the fact that (in spite of much that is undesirable) so many nations have ranged themselves upon the side of right, and only two definitely and altogether upon the side of evil. The evil is more concentrated, and therefore more powerful temporarily upon the physical plane; the good is more diffused and not so pure in its concentrated essence being coloured by many undesirable aspects; the good, however, is concentrating rapidly and will triumph. The "Lights that carry out the will of God" now wait to give another touch which will enable the reconstruction work to move forward along right lines, but They wait for the invocative cry of humanity and for the dust of battle and of conflict to die down.

The next two rules will reveal the issues still more clearly and will outline for you when better understood, explained and amplified, the processes and methods of hierarchical work, carried on in conjunction with the Great Council of Shamballa. To this must be added the cooperation—as far as may be—of all enlightened men, working under the Lightbearers, the Masters, and under the inspiration of the Lights which carry out the will of God.

In the foregoing I have endeavoured to give some faint idea of the relation existing between the Hierarchy and Shamballa. I did this in order that you might grasp some measure of the synthesis underlying the entire planetary life; in order also that this rule for initiates could be interpreted as intended, as far as is possible, to the uninitiate consciousness; and finally, in order that the entire concept of Shamballa and its immense reservoir of energy, which we call the will or the life of God, may take its rightful place in the occult presentation of truth. The will of God and the life of God are esoterically synonymous terms, and when the life aspect of an individual and his spiritual, selfless will are completely synchronised, then you have—in a human being—the full expression of divinity or what has been called esoterically, "Shamballa is consummated in him."

This again is, of course, only relative but the expression of this relationship may elucidate the problem somewhat, and the aspirant or disciple needs to remember that it is only through the analogies existing in the microcosm to the Macrocosm that enlightenment can come. And how, I ask you, will he understand the relation existing between the three great planetary centres (Shamballa, the Hierarchy and Humanity) when as yet he scarcely knows himself as a human being? How can he grasp these fundamental and advanced truths when he is only just beginning to learn the nature of the hierarchical quality of love and when his spiritual will (which links him to Shamballa) is as yet totally unawakened? And I mean, totally.  But the dim outlines of the general picture must be grasped, and each decade in the future will see the aspirant and the disciple more capable of grasping it.

  1. RULE EIGHT

The previous seven rules have been of a wide and general connotation. They have been largely postulates, emphasising group life, group planetary relationships, and the fundamental Science of Invocation and Evocation which underlies all world processes, which is the inspiring energy behind all evolutionary unfoldment, and which creates the medium or channel of related communication between the great centres in our planet, through which the life of our Logos flows and His purposes are worked out. I would remind you that the creative process was initiated by Sound, and in that Sound the Logos both invoked and evoked. He issued the call and He engineered and implemented the response and thus the "Army of the Voice" came into being.

The Head (the idea), the Heart (the ideal) and the Throat (the creative agent of the resulting idol, the temporary and fleeting expression of the ideal, inspired by the idea) came into being; three great Centres emerged in time and space and—at this point in the evolutionary cycle—we call them Shamballa, the Hierarchy and Humanity. With these fundamental factors the first seven rules have been occupied, and I have tried to help you to see their significance somewhat, from the angle of the initiate-consciousness.

We come now to a close consideration of this Rule VIII, where it might be said that the specific rules for the training of initiates begin. These remaining seven rules must be studied most carefully from that angle. They are not susceptible of casual and superficial analysis. I realise that only those who have taken initiation will be in a position to grasp the esoteric significance of the words I use and of much that I may say, but it is for them I write; their numbers are even today more than are suspected, and their ranks will be steadily increased in the post-war period, both through the strenuous effort of disciples in training to "make the grade," and through the coming into incarnation of initiates of all degrees—some of whom are the children of today.

Rule VIII

For Applicants: When the disciple nears the Portal, the greater seven must awaken and bring forth response from the lesser seven upon the double circle.

For Disciples and Initiates: Let the group and within itself response to the greater seven groups which carry out the hierarchical will with love and understanding. The group contains all seven, the perfect group. The lesser seven, the greater seven and the planetary seven form one great whole, and these the group must know. When this is realised and the Law of the Supplementary Seven is understood, let the group understand the Three and then the ONE. This they can do with the united breath and the united rhythm.

On the surface, this rules appears to be one of surprising complexity and immense difficulty. It deals with so many groups and septenates and this seems to complicate understanding considerably. Yet every person in the world is dealing with the multiplicity of units and combinations of forces which make up his entire daily life and which create his environment and his life circumstances. Life would be simple indeed if the average man had only seven factors to consider, with which to conform, to work with and to use. Advance into the world of spiritual values and into the realm of triadal existence (in which the initiate moves) is definitely an advance into simplicity. It is an advance from the complications of the multiplication table and its resultant arithmetic into the simplicity of the symbolic formulas as used in the higher mathematics; it is a moving out of the world of kaleidoscopic figures in constant movement, into the world of meaning; it is a process of getting behind the world of effects into the world of causes, realising that one simple cause or directed movement of energy can set in motion a myriad of effects. The way of the initiate is not a complicated one, once he has grasped the fact that he must release himself from the world of seeming and of illusion and stand free in the world of light, where all stand clearly revealed. Then he can begin to face the lessons and take the training which will enable him to handle energy—having released himself from the control of forces—and begin to direct energy in conformity with the great Plan. The complexity lies in the thinking of the neophyte. The initiate knows it not.

First let us clearly define the various septenates referred to in this rule. I will first tabulate them in the order of their appearance and define them, and then I will enlarge upon them in order to point out where the training enters in, where the rule applies, and how the embodied rule is in the nature of a Law which the initiate may not evade. I would ask you here to refer to what I earlier said anent rules, laws and orders when starting with you this particular study.

THE HIERARCHY

  1. The seven greater groups...The seven groups or Ashrams within the Hierarchy.

These carry out the hierarchical will, which is love. They work through love and understanding.

Each is presided over by a Chohan and a group is called an Ashram. These major Ashrams have many affiliated Ashrams, presided over by a Master on the same ray as the Chohan, and are capable at any moment of being absorbed into the primary Ashram. The perfect or complete group is the Hierarchy itself, containing all the seven major Ashrams and their affiliates.

SHAMBALLA

  1. The Planetary seven groups...the seven rays, the central septenate of energy.

These embody the will of Shamballa, which is divine purpose. They work as life energy, as quality, and produce appearance. Each is presided over by one of the seven Spirits before the Throne; by one of the seven Ray Lords. Each of these rays has its seven subrays which relate it to all the other rays. These seven rays can, under divine purpose, be re-absorbed into the Three and then into the One.

HUMANITY

  1. The lesser seven...the seven types of men and also the seven root races.

These embody the intelligence of the Logos as it expresses itself through creativity. They are learning to work intelligently with matter in order to develop love in response to divine purpose—which is will or life.

Each of the seven types, responsive to one or other of the seven rays, is conditioned or ruled by its prototype, the soul on its own plane. These major types or races of men have many subraces and subsidiary types, developed during the evolutionary process; all will eventually demonstrate the seven major types. The perfect type is the Christ, the Heavenly Man, Who expresses all the major types and Who is the "pattern of things as they are."

  1. The supplementary seven...the seven centres of energy in the individual man.

These together embody the combined forces of the planetary life as registered by the perfected individual. They will eventually enable the man to achieve perfection. They enable the individual to respond to material forces, to soul energy and spiritual life, and they constitute a complete response apparatus to the planetary life, purpose, intent and form. Each of the seven centres is responsive to one or other of the seven rays and their qualities under the conditioning energy of the soul ray and the forces, emanating from the environment. These centres develop progressively and under the impact of circumstances and the Law of the Supplementary Seven, but all will eventually express in some measure the seven types of ray energy.

The Law of the Supplementary Seven can be worded as follows:  “The Law demands the entrance of that which can effect a change. The Law demands that right direction should then guide the entering forces. The Law demands that the changes thus effected remove the form, bring quality to light and lay the emphasis upon life. The Law demands that this is brought about by the One, working through the Three, energising the Seven and creating the straight line from there to here, and ending in a point which ignores the Three."

When, the rule goes on, this is understood and applied, then four things happen:

  1. The group must understand the nature of the Three.

  1. The nature of the One must be grasped and comprehended.

  1. The group must work through the medium of the united breath.

  1. The group must attain a unified rhythm.

Here you have a relatively simple analysis (on the face of it, though not in reality) of a complex rule which the initiate has to apply to himself once he has grasped the significance of the seven basic postulates. The first seven rules provide the framework within which his work has to be done. The last seven rules concern various significant matters which, step by step, are revealed to the initiate as his consciousness is expanded, relating to:

  1. The work which the initiate must accomplish within himself.

  1. The group relations of the initiate and his absolute need to work with his group and as an integrated and conscious part of it.

  1. The place which invocation and evocation must take as instruments in his pledged intelligent service.

  1. The blending of the four lessons which the applicant has to master and the four lessons which the initiate has to complete in order that a complete fusion of personality and Monad can be brought about.

  1. The significance of resurrection and ascension, particularly the latter, because little has been given out to date anent ascension.

There are certain major frameworks (if I may continue to use this phrase) within which the initiate has to learn consciously to work, recognising them for what they are; once he has learnt to master that which lies within some particular framework, he finds that it is only a part, a small fraction, of a still greater whole, within which he must also learn to function and play his part.

First he, as a disciple, has to learn to work within the framework of his blending soul-personality. This task at first takes the form of character building and disciplining (whilst upon the Probationary Path), of a struggle to see, of an endeavour to make a continuity of his soul contact. Finally, this leads to the beginning of the stage of soul and personality merging and at this point he steps upon the Path of Discipleship, technically understood. From then on his problem is to know himself as he truly is, to direct energy to the needed centres which are awaiting scientific attention, to superintend consciously the fitting of himself, as a personality, to act as the instrument of the soul and later of the Hierarchy, to learn to contact energy, to handle and direct it.

This entails a comprehension of the mechanism within himself—the seven centres within the vital body—through which the contacted energy must flow under soul direction, and it also means the perfecting of the response apparatus and the newly constructed spiritual mechanism which exoterically enables him to contact the outside world, and esoterically enables him to contact the world of souls.  It implies a steady process of interior perfecting until nothing further remains to be done within that individual framework. The bulk of this work has been covered by the time the fourth initiation has been taken, and has been completely covered when the fifth initiation is undergone.

This all takes much time, but when a certain measure of success has been achieved, when the initiate's understanding is somewhat enlightened and his energy-use and his power of direction are becoming intelligently applied, he can then begin to work within the framework of the greater seven groups, that is, within the Hierarchy. This he does first upon the periphery of the hierarchical aura and later as a conscious, accepted and pledged worker in some Ashram—the Ashram being dependent upon his ray type. He then is in a position to discover the close interlocking that exists between the supplementary seven (his own seven centres) and the seven great groups within the Hierarchy; he comes to realise that only when his centres are somewhat awakened and attuned is it possible for him to work within the larger framework of the Hierarchy, and this because the quality of the greater groups and the life expression of the seven planetary groups, the seven rays, are being slowly developed by him under the influence of hierarchical supervision through the medium of his own seven centres—the supplementary seven.

Thus, from a new angle which is practical and not simply theoretical, it begins to dawn on him that he is an inalienable part of a group whole and that this incontrovertible fact involves responsibilities and duties. He discovers that his major responsibility—spiritually speaking—is to permit no hindrance, on the part of the supplementary seven, to the free flow of love from the greater seven, and later the free flow of life (inspired by purpose) from the planetary seven. He knows now that all form a great interlocking directorate through which the will of God is working out. He now knows himself to be a minute part of that great interlocking Whole, a responsible conscious atom within its periphery. Then as he goes on and learns to submit to the Law of the Supplementary Seven, he finds that from the life angle and through his own conscious direction, gradually developed, all the potencies of divinity are his to use, once he can be trusted, as the advanced initiate can ever be trusted. He is then set free for complete cooperation with the purpose lying behind the Plan. He has passed out of the human kingdom into the Hierarchy; later he will pass out of the hierarchical group into Shamballa, or out of our planetary life altogether, and either here or there will begin a greater and more extended service.

Coming down to the immediate practical issues, the initiate is confronted with the problem of work within the individual framework, for I am not here dealing with the requirements for the initiations above or beyond the third. Here the initiate has reached the point where he grasps the significant fact that the way into the innermost Centre is most securely guarded; no one can pass onward and take those more advanced steps which admit into the higher worlds of being and of unparalleled potency until he has demonstrated within the framework of his own life a definite control of energy (and this the black adept also possesses), purity of motive (which the black adept can likewise have, if by purity of motive you mean single-hearted and one-pointed intent), deep love of humanity (which the black adept never has), selflessness, willingness to follow the light wherever it may lead, ability to begin work within the larger framework the moment such an attempt becomes possible, clear vision and spiritual insight, a developed intuition, and an undeviating intention and strong faith in the future. When these qualities begin to show themselves, it then becomes possible to admit the initiate to further advancement upon the Way.

It is believed to be safe for him now to move on a few more steps into greater light, and then—having reached his next point of testing—he must there again demonstrate the rightness of his work within the individual framework and his ability to work within the greater framework in group formation. He must appreciate the fact that as he passes upon the upward way he may not safely so do without the safeguards which protect the Way from him until he knows more; he must learn also that the group protects him and that only with the group can he proceed with security; he begins to realise that the group is not only a protection but also his chosen and destined field of service. He begins to learn with his group the meaning of the "united breath" referred to in the rule, and also to work with the group in "unified rhythm."

Thus he goes from strength to strength. All the time the Hierarchy is aiding in his development and at the same time protecting the Way from him until such time as glamour cannot reach him. This individual security of his is only reached between the time of taking the second initiation and the third. Prior to that, he is still regarded as a potential hazard and as unstable. After that, he may suffer from illusion, but there is then no fear of his permanently turning back and reaching the left-hand path and so perhaps, in rare cases, finding his way into the Black Lodge. The major liability of the average initiate is sloth or lack of speed. Ponder on that.

I would have you grasp clearly the highly condensed presentation I have given you. Some of it you know already but it is the synthetic presentation which I would have you appreciate and appropriate. We can then take up the work to be done within the individual framework by the initiate; I will endeavour to help you to understand somewhat more clearly what the initiate-consciousness would read into the Law of the Supplementary Seven.

Beginning with this eighth rule which we are now studying, we enter upon the consideration of certain major unfoldments, major spiritual happenings and a series of major awakenings in consciousness which are in the nature of events. These involve likewise certain major recognitions and appreciations which will affect the initiate increasingly and bring about his eventual attainment. These are the factors which condition the date of his achievement and not the character undertakings and the soul contacts which are so necessary upon the Path of Probation and upon the Path of Discipleship.

We are principally concerned at this point with the interpretation of the Law of the Supplementary Seven. It must be remembered that the Laws of Nature are imposed upon the mass of men, and cannot be avoided. If these laws are broken, infringed or evaded, they carry their own penalty within themselves, and this also cannot be avoided. These great protective laws are intended to guard the personalities through which the soul incarnates and eventually to cement and further all the great and possible relationships. The man passes from the stage of antagonism (as an individual) to the control of these natural though divine laws, to a recognition of their inevitability and of their wisdom. They automatically then control him.

When this control by the Laws of Nature has become complete, the man becomes an aspirant and begins to come under the Laws of the Soul, which are laws concerned primarily with the establishing of the great Fellowship of the Universe. There has been much confusion among esotericists upon these points. They confuse the discipline to which the personality has to submit when coming under soul influence, with the Laws of the Soul which have naught to do with the petty little affairs of the personality—unimportant and unnoticed by the soul on its own plane—but with the growing recognition of right group relations; these are based upon a growing understanding of the hierarchical mode of work and of inter-hierarchical relationships.

The Laws of Nature, therefore, concern the activities of the soul in form and are mandatory and accepted by the form nature. The Laws of the Soul concern the life of the soul upon its own plane, and the relation which the blending soul and personality learn to establish with other souls and with the Hierarchy. These are consciously and voluntarily obeyed, and are not just accepted as mandatory and as forced upon the man by force of circumstances, experience and evolution. They tend to bring about increasing relation between the Hierarchy of Souls and Humanity as a whole, between the great planetary centre which is the custodian of the principle of love and the planetary centre, humanity, which nurtures and distributes the energy of mind.

The Law of the Supplementary Seven is the great synthetic Law of Life or of Spirit and is the law with which the initiate works; it is this law he wields. From acceptance of the laws of nature and obedience to the laws of the soul, he passes into the positive phase of understanding and wielding the Law of Life. Because this is a governing law for all initiates, and because we know that the nature of life-energy or of spirit cannot be grasped until after the third initiation, it is exceedingly difficult for me to write in explanation of this law.  You have not yet the initiate consciousness. I have therefore had to express this law in terms of form, whereas the initiate understands it from its formless angle.

This law is concerned with the wielding of energy in the world of the Spiritual Triad and not with the distribution or the transmission of this energy to the three worlds in which average humanity habitually dwells. Right wielding of this law (controlling energy in the initiatory world of causes) automatically brings about activity, movement, force expression, and right distribution of these forces in the lower three worlds. These are, under the evolutionary law, direct reflections of the three higher worlds of the triadal light and life. Motivation, the use of the eye of vision (turned this time by the initiate functioning in the world of causes upon the worlds of human living), and the correct direction of force in cooperation with the hierarchical Plan condition all the activities of the initiate working with this law. Clearer than this I cannot be.

This Law of the Supplementary Seven is concerned with the inflow of energy from the seven planetary centres to the seven groups or types of men, via the seven groups within the Hierarchy. In this work of transmission the seven centres of the initiate are used as agencies; their work, therefore, is not the interrelated work of right transmission of energy within the septenary constitution of the etheric body of the individual initiate, implementing his life expression, but is the task of being responsive to the seven types of planetary energy which are received in a pure state. It is then channeled through the seven centres in the initiate's etheric vehicle and out into the world of men as regenerative and constructive forces. These living spiritual energies—transmitted by the individual initiate from the planetary centres—are handled by him under a great uniform plan and are the means whereby salvation (to use an old familiar word) can come to the aid of humanity. This is the "saving force" in its various aspects, of which the Great Invocation speaks: "The hour of service of the Saving Force has now arrived". (The Externalisation of the Hierarchy)

The high Initiates (Those above the rank of Master) work with the energies coming from the seven planets of the solar system at this time active; these feed or implement the seven planetary centres. But the Law of the Supplementary Seven is applied by initiates below the rank of Master, and they are therefore working solely with the seven centres within the Form of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being.

One of their first tasks is to bring about a free flow and right energy relations between the three major centres in our planet which correspond to the head, heart and throat centres in man. They are occupied with the circulation of energy between Shamballa, the Hierarchy and Humanity. This circulation, which for the first time in planetary history includes the highest centre, Shamballa, is not yet completely established. Shamballa has been in touch with the centre called Humanity by impact several times in the history of the race. But there has been no reciprocal action and no free flow.

Humanity has taken the impact of energy and this impact has wrought changes in the activity of the centre, but there has been no "responsive return," as it is esoterically called, and hence no circulation. The Shamballa force has hitherto been transmitted via the Hierarchy. For the first time, and in this century there has been direct impact. The diagram may make this clearer.

We shall eventually have a free circulation and a veritable vortex of force set up between the three centres; it will be of such an increasing radiatory activity that—moving in both directions around the three centres—it will eventually contact the radiations emanating from the other four centres of the planetary Life, thus completing the interplay and the interrelation between all seven.  These four include the three lower kingdoms of nature and a certain basic centre (corresponding to the centre at the base of the spine in man) about which nothing is as yet known nor will be known for ages to come.

The importance, therefore, of the centre which we call Humanity will be apparent. The Secret Doctrine has ever taught that mankind has a special function in saving and regenerating nature. The "saving force"—a circulatory combination of the three major energies—is radiated by humanity as a group-creative impulse, and this gradually sweeps all forms of life into the field of its magnetic potency, thus relating them (or rather the soul of each kingdom) to the Hierarchy and to Shamballa. This involves a great mystery which is closely tied up—little as you may realise it—with the doctrine of Avatars or of World Saviours. A study of these ideas may carry illumination, but I would again remind you that I write for initiates, living at a later period in this century and in the next.

  1. "The group must understand the nature of the Three." This will be seen to refer to the three major centres and the nature of their relationship, and not specifically to the Trinity.

  1. "The nature of the One must be grasped and comprehended." This has reference to the fact that our planetary Life is Itself a centre within a still greater Life, and is today one of the three planetary centres (even if not yet one of the seven sacred planets) which are the custodians of the force, in process of transmission, which will be to the greater Life what Shamballa, the Hierarchy and Humanity are to Our planetary Logos.

  1. "The group must work through the medium of the united breath." This deals with the processes of circulation, for the breath is the life and pours through all the centres.

  1. "The group must attain a unified rhythm." This has no reference in reality to the work of a group of disciples, but to a group of centres of life, such as the three major centres or the entire group of seven centres.

In considering this Law of the Supplementary Seven, I would like to point out that the word "supplementary" is of real significance. It brings in a factor of great interest, from the angle of initiation. You must bear in mind that when the antahkarana is constructed and in use, there is consequently a free play of energy in a direct line between the Spiritual Triad and the personality; i.e., between the Monad and its "earthly anchor." You will also remember that the soul body, the form on the higher levels of the mental plane which has "shrouded" the soul, eventually disappears.  This, as you know, takes place at the fourth initiation and is one of the best recognised facts in the occult teaching.  In the three worlds, the correspondence to this disappearance of the form of the second divine aspect, the soul, is the dissolution of the astral body—the second aspect of the personality. Then the personality stands free from its control. Sensitivity and reaction to contact in the three worlds has been perfectly developed, but it no longer holds the disciple a prisoner.

Then, at a later stage upon the Path of Initiation, the causal body also disappears and the initiate stands free in the three worlds. The astral body and the causal or soul body are—in the language of esotericism—supplementary to reality. They have had a temporary reality during the evolutionary process, but (having served their purpose and having endowed man with certain required assets— consciousness, feeling, sensitivity, the ability to establish and register contact) they pass away and the initiate remains, possessed of power over form and a fully awakened consciousness. He is a soul and the fusion is complete.

What is true of the individual is true too of the Heavenly Man, the planetary Logos. In the long period of a world cycle there comes a time when the Hierarchy itself, as a body organised and functioning in order to implement certain evolutionary ends, is no longer needed. It is then regarded as "supplementary," and under the Law its life, its potency and its entire consciousness are absorbed into the planetary head centre, Shamballa. A great process of abstraction or of withdrawal takes place, covering necessarily a long period of time, and which is consummated only when evolution—as we know it—comes to an end and the planetary Life (again as we know it) also comes to an end. This process of abstraction is always going on. Men become disciples and then initiates. Some stay as hierarchical workers, choosing to work with the planetary forces of evolution. Others pass on into the great Council Chamber of the Lord of the World, and still others pass out of our planetary ring-pass-not altogether.

Thus the Law of the Supplementary Seven is ever in force. It functions in the processes going on in the seven centres of the individual man, gathering energy from one centre into another until all are centred, controlled and directed in the head. In the stage of what the Hindus call "samadhi" the vital energies from all the centres are concentrated in the highest head centre in the etheric body, in the area just above the physical head. Thus the analogy is complete. The processes of abstraction are (as you may thus see) connected with the life aspect, are set in motion by an act of the spiritual will, and constitute the "resurrection principle which lies hidden in the work of the Destroyer," as an old esoteric saying expresses it. The lowest manifestation of this principle is to be seen in the process of what we call Death—which is in reality a means of abstracting the life principle, informed by consciousness, from the form or the bodies in the three worlds. Thus, the great synthesis emerges, and destruction, death, and dissolution are in reality naught but life processes. Abstraction is indicative of process, progress and development.

It is this aspect of the Law of Life (or the Law of Synthesis as it is called in certain larger connotations) with which the initiate specifically deals when wielding the Law of the Supplementary Seven. The group angle of the matter can be seen if you remember that the individual initiate, when wielding this law, draws upon the united energy of the Will as the group is expressing it in "unified rhythm." It is by the use of the "united breath" of the entire group (as much of it as his individual will can assimilate, focus, use and direct) that he augments his own will and its directed force. The breath, as we well know, is the life; this Law is the one wielded by the living or risen Christ, in perfect harmony with the will of Shamballa. Herein lies one of the mysteries of the resurrection initiation about which so little has been told, and it is the very heart of the mystery of the ascension initiation. In this latter initiation the living risen Christ withdraws or abstracts Himself and enters consciously and permanently into the great centre, Shamballa.  The resurrection and the ascension are the results of the death or destruction of the causal body. It can be seen, therefore, how true the Gospel story is to the purposes of Shamballa.

  1. The Law demands the entrance of that which can effect a change.

Bearing in mind what I have elsewhere given, it is obvious that that which must find entrance is that vital concentrated will which, when set in motion in an individual, in a group, in a nation, in a kingdom of nature (a planetary centre), and in the planet as a whole, i.e., in all the planetary centres simultaneously, will cause a stirring, a changed measure, a new movement and momentum, an uprising and a consequent abstraction. The changes wrought in the centres when the death of the physical body is taking place have never yet been observed or recorded; they are, however, definitely present to the eye of the initiate and prove most interesting and informative. It is the recognition of the condition of the centres which enables the initiate to know—when in process of bestowing healing—whether the physical healing of the body is permissible or not. He can see whether the will principle of abstraction to which I have been referring is actively present or not. The same process can be seen taking place in organisations and in civilisations in which the form aspect is being destroyed in order that the life may be abstracted and later again rebuild for itself a more adequate form. It is the same under the great processes of initiation, which are not only processes of expanding the consciousness but are rooted in the death or the abstraction process, leading to resurrection and ascension.

That which effects a change is a discharge of directed and focussed will-energy. This is so magnetic in quality that it draws to itself the life of the centres, bringing about the dissolution of the form and the release of the life. Death comes to the individual man, in the ordinary sense of the term, when the will-to-live in a physical body goes and the will-to-abstract takes its place. This we call death. In cases of death in war, for instance, it is not then a case of the individual will-to-withdraw, but an enforced participation in a great group abstraction. From its own place, the soul of the individual man recognises the end of a cycle of incarnation and recalls its life.  This it does through a discharge of the will-energy that is strong enough to bring about the change.

  1. The Law demands that right direction should then guide the entering forces.

The entering forces, working under this law, are directed first of all to the head centre, from thence to the ajna centre and then to that centre which has been the governing and most active centre during the incarnation of the life principle. This varies according to the point reached upon the ladder of evolution, and according to the personality ray, with later the soul ray bringing about a major conditioning and change. In the work of the initiate who is consciously wielding this law, the principle of abstraction (when entering the body) is held focussed in the head and is of such a magnetic potency that the energy of the remaining centres is rapidly gathered up and withdrawn. What is true of the individual process of abstracting the life principle, under the Law of the Supplementary Seven, is equally true of the process in all forms and in all groups of forms. Christ referred to this work of abstraction, as regards the third great planetary centre, Humanity, when He said (and He was speaking as the Representative of the Hierarchy, the second planetary centre into which all human beings achieving initiation are "withdrawn" esoterically), "I, if I be lifted up will draw all men unto me." A different word to this word of His will be spoken at the end of the age when the Lord of the World will speak from Shamballa, will abstract the life principle from the Hierarchy, and all life and consciousness will then be focussed in the planetary head centre—the great Council Chamber at Shamballa.

  1. The Law demands that the changes thus effected remove the form, bring quality to light, and lay the emphasis upon life.

Here the three great aspects—form, quality and life—are brought into relation and the point of the evolutionary objective is seen in its true light—LIFE. Note this phrasing. Form or appearance, having served its purpose, disappears. Death of the form takes place. Quality, the major divine attribute being developed in this planet, becomes dominant and is "conscious of itself "—as the ancient writings put it. It is identified and individual but has no implementing form, except that of the greater whole in which it finds its place. Neither form nor quality (body nor consciousness) are paramount in the new state of Being, but only the life aspect, the spirit on its own plane, becomes the dominating factor. Some faint dim light on the significance of this may come if you bear in mind that our seven planes are only the seven subplanes of the cosmic physical plane. The process of developing sensitivity in this sevenfold evolution has been undergone in order to enable the initiate to function upon the cosmic astral plane, when withdrawn or abstracted after the higher initiations. He is abstracted from our planetary life altogether. Only one factor could prevent this, and that might be his pledge to serve temporarily within the planetary ring-pass-not. Such Members of the Hierarchy Who pledge Themselves to this work are stated to have the Buddhic consciousness, and the line of Their descent (occultly understood) is from the Eternal Pilgrim, the Lord of the World, then the Buddha, and then the Christ. They remain identified through the free choice with the "quality seen within the light," and for the term of Their freely rendered service They work with the consciousness aspect in order to lay the emphasis later upon the life aspect.

  1. The Law demands that this is brought about by the One, working through the Three, energising the Seven and creating the straight line from there to here, and ending in a point which ignores the Three.

Let me paraphrase this, for detailed comment is not possible or permissible. The One directed will (of the individual, of humanity, of the Hierarchy) and the great Lords of Shamballa, working through the three major centres (head, heart and throat; Humanity, the Hierarchy and Shamballa), thereby energise all the seven centres (to the point of abstraction), using the straight line of the antahkarana from above downwards (from the centre of power, the head or Shamballa), and gather all upwards into a point which is neither of the Three (Shamballa, the Hierarchy and Humanity) and ignores them, for they must no longer limit the life. This point lies outside manifestation altogether. Abstraction is complete. Ponder, therefore, upon this doctrine of abstraction. It covers all life processes, and will convey to you the eternally lovely secret of Death, which is entrance into life.

  1. RULE NINE

As we proceed with the study of these rules the difficulty of interpreting and explaining them becomes increasingly great. We have arrived at a section of the rules which requires initiate-consciousness for right and true comprehension; we are studying ideas for which we have, as yet, no adequate language. Briefly, we have considered certain of the lower aspects of the Laws of Life as they appear to the initiate and are interpreted by him within the sphere of his normal consciousness—that of the Spiritual Triad. The presentation which I gave you had to be confined within the area of consciousness which we call "manasic awareness," which is that of the abstract mind. Just in so far as that abstract mind is developed in you and the antahkarana tenuously constructed will be your understanding of my words.

The difficulty becomes still greater as we arrive at the study of Rule IX. It was of real difficulty when presented in its lower form to applicants. That rule, as you may remember, ran as follows:

Let the disciple merge himself within the circle of the other selves. Let but one colour blend them and their unity appear. Only when the group is known and sensed can energy be wisely emanated.

Three major ideas appear in this easier rule:

  1. The idea of complete identity with all other selves.

  1. The idea of the uniformity of their spiritual presentation to the world when unity is established.

  1. The idea that—as a result of the two above achievements—the group force, as a real and focussed energy, can then be used.

Glibly the neophyte talks of identifying himself with others, and eagerly he endeavours to ascertain his group and merge with it; yet in so doing the constant concept of duality is ever present—himself and all other selves, himself and the group, himself and the group energy which he may now wield. Yet this is not so in reality.  

Where true identity is achieved, there is no sense of this and that; where the merging is complete, there is no recognition of individual activity within the group, because the will of the merged soul is identical with that of the group and automatic in its working; where true unity is present, the individual applicant becomes only a channel for the group will and activity, and this with no effort of his own but simply as a spontaneous reaction.

I have emphasised the above because in the rule for disciples and initiates, this will be found to be still more the case and the results are brought about by a conscious use of the will which is divine synthesis in action; also, the group referred to is not the Ashram of some particular Master, but that of all Ashrams as they in their entirety reflect the purpose of Shamballa and work out the Plan within the active sphere of the hierarchical consciousness.

Ashrams of the Masters are to be found on every level of consciousness in the threefold world of the Spiritual Triad. Some Masters pre-eminently occupy themselves with the mind aspect within all forms, and therefore their Ashrams are conditioned by the manasic consciousness; they are the Ashrams of those initiates who have taken the fourth initiation but who are not yet Masters.  They are largely adepts upon the third and fifth rays, and work with the manas or mind as it is developing in all forms.

They do foundational work of great importance, but are little understood and their lives are consequently lives of great sacrifice and the term of their service in this particular connection is relatively short. Certain aspects of their developed consciousness have to be kept in abeyance and must remain temporarily unexpressed in order to permit them to work with substance and specifically with the consciousness of the atoms which constitute the forms in all the subhuman kingdoms of nature.

They do very little work with humanity, except with certain advanced members of humanity who are on the scientific line, drawing to their Ashrams only those who are on the third and fifth rays and who can continue with the work, being trained along peculiar and special lines.

The Ashrams of the Masters (to be found on all the rays) Who work in particular with humanity, are mostly to be found upon the buddhic levels of the triadal consciousness. There the note of "loving understanding" predominates, but even these words must be interpreted esoterically and not according to their usual and obvious meaning. It is not a case of "I understand because I love," or that "this," with love, understands "that." It is something far deeper, involving the idea of identification, of participation, and of synthetic realisation—lovely euphonious words, but meaning little to the non-initiates.

On atmic levels, the levels of the spiritual will, are to be found the Ashrams of those Masters Who are interpreting the will of Shamballa and to Whom is committed the task of transmitting the purpose and organising the plans whereby that purpose can be fulfilled. As on manasic levels the Ashrams as a whole are presided over by the Master R., the Lord of Civilisation, so on buddhic levels all Ashrams are supervised by the Master K.H., with the aid of myself (the Master D.K.) and three senior and initiated disciples; the objective is the unfoldment of group awareness and of loving understanding, in order that the forms prepared and conditioned under the supervision of the Master R. may be sensitised and become increasingly conscious of reality through the development of an inner mechanism of light which—in its turn—will condition and develop the outer mechanism of contact. Ashrams on atmic levels are under the control of the Master M., Who fosters the will aspect within the developed forms and Who "adds darkness unto light so that the stars appear, for in the light the stars shine not, but in the darkness light diffused is not, but only focussed points of radiance." The symbolism will be obvious to you though not the full significance.

Embracing, fusing and unifying the endeavour of all these groups of Ashrams, stands the living Christ, the Head of all Ashrams and the Master of the Masters, the Mediator between Shamballa and the Hierarchy and between the Hierarchy and Humanity. Will you gain some insight into the all-pervading conditions if I state that His work of mediating between humanity and the Hierarchy was perfected by Him and carried to a conclusion when He was last on Earth, and that He is now achieving facility in the higher mediatorship which will bring about a closer relation of the Hierarchy with Shamballa at this time. This mediatory work, based on the blending of the spiritual will (which He has already developed) with the universal will (which He is developing), marks for Him a goal which will be consummated when He takes the ninth initiation. These are great mysteries and I only indicate them in order to convey to you a sense of the synthesis of the whole scheme and a recognition of the urge-to-good which pervades every aspect of the planetary Life from the smallest atom of substance, through all the intermediate living forms, on and up to the planetary Logos Himself.

The will is too often regarded as a power by means of which things are done, activities are instituted and plans worked out. This general definition is the easiest for men to formulate because it is understood by them in terms of their own self-will, the will to individual self-betterment—selfish and misunderstood at first but tending eventually to selflessness as evolution carries out its beneficent task. Then the will is interpreted in terms of the hierarchical plan, and the effort of the individual man becomes that of negating his self-will and seeking to merge his will with that of the group, the group being itself an aspect of the hierarchical effort. This is a great step onward in orientation and will lead to a change in consciousness eventually. This last sentence is of importance.

It is at this stage that most aspirants today find themselves. However, the will is in reality something very different to these expressions of it which exist in the human consciousness as men attempt to interpret the divine will in terms of their present point in evolution. The clue to understanding (the clue which will be the easiest for you to understand) is to be found in the words "blotting out all form." When the lure of substance is overcome and desire dies, then the attractive power of the soul becomes dominant and the emphasis for so long laid upon individual form and individual living and activity gives place to group form and group purpose. Then the attractive power of the Hierarchy and of the Ashrams of the Masters supersedes the lower attractions and the lesser focal points of interest. When these, in their turn, assume their rightful place in consciousness then the dynamic "pull" of Shamballa can be felt, entirely unrelated to form or forms, to a group or groups. Only a group sense of "well-Being," esoterically understood is realised, for it is comprehended as the will-to-good. No forms can then hold; no group or Ashram can then confine the consciousness of the initiate, and all differences of every kind disappear.  This preamble is given in an effort to clarify your minds before we study Rule IX care-fully and arrive at its essential meaning.

Rule IX

Let the group know there are no other selves. Let the group know there is no colour, only light; and then let darkness take the place of light, hiding all difference, blotting out all form. Then—at the place of tension, and at that darkest point—let the group see a point of clear cold fire, and in the fire (right at its very heart) let the One Initiator appear Whose star shone forth when first the Door was passed.

The greatest problem facing aspirants and disciples prior to the third initiation is that of comprehending the nature of identification. This concerns (in the first instance) the relation of the self to the Self and of all selves to the all-inclusive SELF. It involves the mystery of duality with which they are occupied, and the very moment that theory as to essential unity becomes definite realisation, then the realm of synthesis is entered. For that type of realisation, language as we now have it has no words, and it is therefore impossible to formulate concepts to interpret the consequent and resultant state of being. "Identification with" is the phrase which approaches the closest to the initial idea, and until man has grasped his identical at-one-ness with even one human being, it is not possible for him even to think about it in any truly constructive manner. The complete fusion of the negative and the positive aspects in marriage, at the moment that life is transmitted and transferred, is the only tangible though unsatisfactory symbol of this life-sharing process which takes place when an individual or a group knows actually and not simply theoretically that "there are no other selves."

Identification is connected with dynamic life, with conscious enhancement, with completion and with creative sharing, plus process. It is a process of participation—consciously and constructively undertaken—in the life actions and reactions of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being; it is related to the network of life channels which keep the form aspect of the planetary Logos functioning as a "Divine Representation." Note that wording. It is connected with the circulation of that "life more abundantly" to which the Christ referred when dealing with the true nature of His mission. It might be said that as He uttered this phrase this mission dawned on Him and He made a preliminary effort to serve Shamballa, instead of the Hierarchy of which He was even then the Head. Later, He enunciated as best He could the extent of this realisation, in the words so familiar to Christians, "I and the Father are One." This He also attempted to elucidate in the seventeenth chapter of St. John's Gospel. There is no other passage in the literature of the world which has exactly the same quality. Oneness, unity, synthesis and identification exist today as words related to consciousness and as expressing what is at present unattainable to the mass of men. This manifesto or declaration of the Christ constitutes the first attempt to convey reaction to contact with Shamballa, and can be correctly interpreted only by initiates of some standing and experience. A concept of unity, leading to cooperation, to impersonality, to group work and to realisation, plus a growing absorption in the Plan are some of the terms which can be used to express soul awareness in relation to the Hierarchy. These reactions to the united Ashrams which constitute the Hierarchy are steadily increasing and are beneficently conditioning the consciousness of the leading members of the forefront of the human wave at present in process of evolution.

Beyond this state of awareness there lies a state of being which is as far removed from the consciousness of Members of the Hierarchy as that is, in its turn, removed from the consciousness of the mass of men. Endeavour to grasp this, even if your brain and your power to formulate thought rejects the possibility of this exalted livingness. Be not discouraged at this inability to understand; remember that this state of being embraces the goal towards which the Masters strive, and which the Christ Himself is only now attaining.

It is for this reason that the symbolism of light and darkness is used in the words:

Let the group know there is no colour, only light; and then let darkness take the place of light.

Just as the individual has to pass through the stage wherein all "colour" goes out of life as he emerges out of the glamour which conditions the astral plane, so groups in preparation for initiation must go through the same devastating process. Glamour disappears, and for the first time the group (as is the case with the individual) walks in the light. As the group thus walks, unitedly its units learn a lesson (one clearly enunciated by modern science) that light and substance are synonymous terms; the true nature of substance as a field and medium of activity becomes clear to the initiate-members of the group. To this H.P.B. referred when he said that the true occultist works entirely in the field of forces and energies.

The next lesson which the group unitedly apprehends is the significance of the words that "darkness is pure spirit." This recognition, realisation, apprehensive, comprehensive (call it what you will) is so overwhelming and all-embracing that distinctions and differences disappear. The disciple realises that they are only the result of the activity of substance in its form-making capacity and are consequently illusion and non-existent, from the angle of the spirit at rest in its own centre. The only realisation left is that of pure Being Itself.

This realisation necessarily comes to the disciple through the means of graded revelation and in balanced sequence; each contact with the Initiator leads the initiate closer to the centre of pure darkness—a darkness which is the very antithesis of darkness as the non-initiate and the unenlightened understand. It is a centre or point of such intense brilliance that everything fades out and at the place of tension, and at that darkest point, let the group see a point of clear cold fire.

It is a tension and a point of attainment that is only possible in group formation. Even in the earlier initiations, and when the initiate has proved his right to be initiated, the process is still a group proceeding; it is undergone in the protective presence of initiates of the same standing and unfoldment. It is their united focus that enables the candidate for initiation to see the point of clear cold light and their united will that "brings him upright, standing, unafraid, with open eye before the One Who from the very first has conferred on him the gifts of life and light, and Who now—with lifted rod, surrounded by the fire, reveals to him the significance of life and the purpose of the light." It is that of which the minds of men know naught, and which even the highest intellect is unable to grasp or even sense.

In the familiar words which are so often said or chanted at moments of highest spiritual aspiration, the neophyte refers to the time when "we stand where the One Initiator is invoked, when we see His star shine forth." Two ideas then stand forth: the idea of invocation and of the result of that invocation, which is the sudden and unexpected shining forth of the Star. This star is simply a point of vivid light.  This invocation, though used as the affirmation of a fixed objective by the aspirant to initiation, is nevertheless a mantram definitely appropriate to the third initiation. It is only effective in its invocative appeal when used in conjunction with a Word of Power. This Word of Power is communicated to the candidate (ever an initiate of the second degree) by the Christ Who has initiated him in the first two initiations but Whose protective aura (in conjunction with the initiate's Master and another Master or an adept of the fourth initiation) is required before the star can shine forth—the focussed light of the One Initiator.

For the first time the expanded consciousness of the initiate can contact Shamballa and the One Who rules there, the Lord of the World. For the first time, the focussed purpose which brought Sanat Kumara into incarnation makes an impact upon the enlightened brain of the initiate, bringing something new and different into his equipment, into his nature and his consciousness. I know not how else to express these ideas. It is a blinding conviction of an unalterable will, carrying all before it, oblivious of time and space, aware only of intensity of direction, and carrying with it two major qualifications or basic recognitions to the initiate: a sense of essential being which obliterates all the actions and reactions of time and space, and a focussed will-to-good which is so dynamic in its effect that evil disappears. Evil is after all only an impelling sense of difference, leading inevitably to separative action.

The dualities are then resolved in synthesis and, again for the first time, the initiate comprehends the meaning of the ancient words, so inappropriately translated "isolated unity." To him, in the future, there is no light or dark, no good or evil, no difference or separation. The star that has shone forth, veiling and standing between him and the Lord of the World, the Ancient of Days, is seen as the entrance or doorway and as the admitting agency into something other and larger than simply the planetary life. In the earlier two initiations, the Angel of the Presence stood between the disciple-candidate and the Presence. At the later initiations, the Angel of the Presence is the Christ Himself, one with the soul of the candidate (the individual Angel of the Presence). Through the heart of Christ passes the dynamic power of the One Initiator, as a stream of light, stepped down or toned down by the Christ in order that the candidate can appropriate its potency without risk or danger.

After the third initiation, the candidate must face the One Initiator alone, with no protective Individual standing between him and the eternal source of all-power. The Christ is present, supporting and attentive. He stands directly behind the initiate so as to arrest and distribute the potency passing through the initiate's body and centres; the candidate is also flanked on either side by a Master.

Nevertheless, he faces the Initiator alone and unprotected. Even now, at this much later initiation, he cannot see "eye to eye"—as the phrase goes. He becomes aware of a growing point of light which, from a pin-point of intensest brilliance develops before him into a five-pointed star. At the fourth initiation, it is not a star which shines forth before him, but a triangle; and within that triangle he will perceive an eye regarding him, and for the first time he does see the Most High "eye to eye."

At the fifth initiation no symbol or light substance separates or protects him, but he stands before the Initiator face to face, and the freedom of the City of God is his. He is not yet a Member of the Great Council, but he has the right of entrance into Shamballa, and from that point he passes on to a more intimate relation, if that is his chosen destiny.

He may not even finally become a Member of the Great Council; that is reserved for relatively few and for Those Who can take even still higher initiations within the ring-pass-not of our planet—a task of profound difficulty. There are other and interesting alternatives, as I have elsewhere told you. The initiate may pass out of this planetary life altogether along one or other of the various Paths by means of which a Master can start upon the Path of the Higher Evolution and for which all that has transpired in the past will have prepared Him. Whichever Way He goes, the Master remains a part of the purpose; He knows forever the secret of the darkness which brings light, and the "inscrutable will of God" is no longer a mystery to Him. He comprehends the divine idea and can now cooperate with it; He has reached a point of realisation which enables Him to fathom what lies behind the Plan for which the Hierarchy has worked for aeons.

Just as the disciple enters the world of meaning and so can interpret events, just as the Hierarchy works in the world of mediation, applying the Plan which the world of meaning has revealed, so the higher initiate works consciously in the world of purpose which the Plan implements, the world of meaning interprets, and the world of events expresses in sequential order and under the evolutionary Law.

The symbol which expresses the door of evolution is the crescent moon; that of the process of evolution—as it affects the material or substantial life of the man—is the waxing and the waning moon—the symbol of growing desire and of the dying out of desire. The symbol of the world of meaning is Light—the light which shines upon the ways of men, interpreting events and bestowing revelation. The symbol of the world of mediation is the revolving Cross, whilst the symbol of the world of purpose is a twofold one: the five-pointed star and then the radiant heart of the Sun. Remember that when we talk and think in symbols, we are placing something between ourselves and reality—something protective, interpretive and significant, but nevertheless veiling and hiding. After the fifth initiation all veils are rent and naught stands between the initiate and Essential Being.

  1. RULE TEN

We now come to one of the most abstruse and difficult of all the rules for initiates; yet at the same time it is one of the most practical in application and of the greatest usefulness. It concerns the etheric levels of activity. I would have you note that I did not say the etheric levels of consciousness, for there is no such thing as consciousness upon the etheric planes. The four planes which constitute the etheric levels of the physical plane are the lowest correspondence to the four planes whereon the Monad and the Spiritual Triad are active, and—as I have oft told you—upon those levels there is no such thing as consciousness as we understand it. There is only a state of being and of activity for which we have no adequate or illustrative words. The four higher planes of our solar system are the four cosmic etheric planes, and one of the lines of development (confronting the initiate) is to function adequately in response to the life of the planetary Logos upon those planes. That, in the last analysis, constitutes the main field of unfoldment and of acquired wisdom for all initiates above the third degree.

In the above paragraph I have presented you with a new concept re-initiation; one that has always been implicit in the teaching but one entirely and completely untouched as yet in any discussions on initiate-training.

In the rule as given to applicants, the disciple is cautioned to work within those levels according to the methods of the deva or angel evolution. The rule runs as follows:

The Army of the Voice, the devas in their serried ranks, work ceaselessly. Let the disciple apply himself to a consideration of their methods; let him learn the rules whereby the Army works within the veils of maya.

These particular devas in "their serried ranks" are the directive agents of the divine energy which implements the purposes of Deity upon the physical plane. They work only on etheric levels—either upon our physical plane or on the cosmic etheric levels. They are therefore active in the realm of maya, which is the etheric plane as we usually understand it, or upon the planes of the Spiritual Triad. They are not active on the three gross physical levels or upon the astral or mental planes, nor are they active upon the highest or logoic plane. There they are implicit or latent but not active. They are the great "impulsive factors" in manifestation, organising substance, directing the multiplicity of lives and beings who constitute the forms through which God expresses divinity. In a peculiar sense, they are the embodiment of the divine purpose upon the planes of the Monad and of the Triad, just as the aggregate of energies in man's etheric body is the result of his inner direction and the cause of his outer manifestation. To understand more fully the function of the deva forces, a man must arrive at some understanding of the forces in his etheric body which, in their turn, are the consequence of his point of attainment—an attainment demonstrated by his astral (emotional) and mental natures and activities.  These indicate his point of development.

The devas are the agents of the divine will because they are a consequence of the point of attainment of our planetary Logos as He exists outside the seven planes of our sphere of existence, the cosmic physical plane. They are conditioned by His cosmic astral and mental vehicles.  In a definite sense, they are the agents of the Universal Mind, even though they are not mental as we understand that term. They are sometimes regarded as blind forces, but that is only because they get their inspiration from levels of divine awareness outside the range of the human consciousness, no matter how high, or when used in its widest connotation.

Their controlling Agent in manifestation is the Triangle of Energy to which we give the name the "Three Buddhas of Activity." They are therefore closely connected with the third aspect of divinity. They are essentially the "eye within the Triangle"—a most familiar symbol to many today.  They are the expression, in activity, of the All-See-ing Eye"; through their agency God sees, and through them and the energy directed through them, He directs the creative process. They are under the complete control of the three Buddhas of Activity, Who are the cosmic Prototypes of the Lords of the three major rays, but not in the sense usually understood when the rays are considered in their relation to man. They are the correspondence of these three rays and are responsible for the entire manifested universe, but only within the orbit of the third aspect, the expression of the Universal Mind.

They come from the cosmic mental plane, just as the energy—distinctive of the second aspect—comes from the cosmic astral plane.

  1. God is mind. God is intelligent functioning. God is creative activity. These are the qualities of the deva evolution.

  1. God is love. God is relationship. God is consciousness. These are the three qualities of the Christ evolution. This latter evolution is carried on within the created sphere of influence of the third aspect.

  1. God is life. God is fire. God is pure being. These are the qualities of the spirit aspect, the omnipotent aspect of Deity.

All these three aspects focus themselves and find an outlet for expression upon the levels of the cosmic etheric planes and upon the levels of the etheric planes known to humanity in the three worlds. The Law of Correspondences is infallible, if rightly approached and applied.

You have been taught that illusion is the characteristic which must be mastered by the initiate as he "escapes" occultly from the three worlds via the mental plane. Glamour, you are told, is the characteristic of the astral plane, and must be dissipated by the disciple as he "escapes" mystically on to the Path of Initiation, just as the initiate finds himself (after mastering illusion) on the Path of the Higher Evolution.

Maya is the conditioning factor on etheric levels, and must be evaded and overcome by the probationary disciple as he "escapes" from the thralldom of the physical plane. Thus he learns to tread the Path of Discipleship. These characteristics are, however, only the reaction of humanity to the activities of the deva evolution, rightly and divinely proceeding with their task of implementing the divine will. When the sphere of their activity comes into contact with the human intelligence, the effect upon humanity (before mastery is gained) is to compel men "to wander in the fields of maya, to drown in the sea of glamour, and to respond to the pull of illusion."

In this teaching, you have presented to you, though in a somewhat different form, the ancient problem of duality, involving as it does the immense potency of the deva evolution. It definitely affects humanity; this is due to the fact that it is an expression of the will aspect of Shamballa. As man develops the will aspect, he learns to break loose from the aura of the deva evolution, and the major task of the Hierarchy (as far as basic essentials are concerned) is to "provide sanctuary" to those who have liberated themselves from the ocean of deva energies in which their vehicles must perforce move and live and have their being, but with which they have otherwise no point of contact, once liberated by their own effort and will "from the angels."  

Rule X

The rules for work within the veils of maya are known and have been used. Let the group widen all the rents within those veils and thus let in the light. Let the Army of the Voice be no more heard, and let the brothers onward move within the Sound. Then let them know the meaning of the O.M. and let them hear that O.M. as it is sounded forth by Him Who stands and waits at the very centre of the Council Chamber of the Lord.

I would here remind you that we are considering work that the initiate must accomplish, and are not considering the usual effort of struggling aspirants to deal with and handle those forces which have worked through into physical expression. These, from the levels of the forty-eight subplanes are waiting to precipitate themselves into the dense physical manifested world. The aspirant must ever work from the outside to the within and must endeavour to direct his life from above downwards, if these forces are to be dominated by him and are not to control him. The initiate, however, works "from within the circle," that is the circle or field of maya.  His activity must therefore be carried forward from the very heart of the mystery of these forces; this he can do because he is in a position to know the type of energy with which he has to contend, to understand the nature of the forces with which he can and must manipulate the "mayavic energies," and thus to dominate the etheric planes he is also aware where one veil ends and another begins, and from what level he can successfully bring the swirling and living energies into conformity with the divine pattern.

It should also be noted here that the energies projected by the initiate into the world of maya are directed by him from the various centres in his own body and from the central point of energy in each particular centre employed. It is the central "jewel in the lotus" from which the initiate works, and these seven central focal points, these seven jewels, so-called, are the correspondence of the jewel in the egoic lotus. This means, therefore, that successful work "within the veils of maya" involves ever the use of the will aspect and the conscious employment of that quota of the Shamballa force which the initiate is able to appropriate and to use because he has begun to work as a focussing agent of the Spiritual Triad and is no longer working as a soul or as a personality under soul control. This is an important point to remember.

It is along the antahkarana that the force used by the initiate must pour, and according to the nature of the work to be done will be the particular strand or thread of the rainbow bridge which the initiate employs. There are four veils of maya, constructed necessarily of seven forces, and these produce the factual and phenomenal aspect (in time and space) of the Great Illusion, in its three forms of illusion, glamour and maya.

There are seven points of energy through which different aspects of the force needed to produce the desired effects within the veils of maya can flow, and these correspond to the seven ray types or qualities. But the major type of energy with which the initiate works upon the physical plane is the seventh, the ray or energy of ritual, of ceremony, of order and of law. The work done within the veils is one of rearrangement and the ordination and coordination of the forces, present as existent maya; this must provide, in time and space, the forms through which the plans of the Hierarchy can materialise, the souls of all forms can be subjected to the needed experience, and so progress towards the fulfillment of the will of God.

Maya is not something to be destroyed, dissipated, dissolved or negated. Maya is in reality an aspect of time, and connotes to the initiate the mass of creative forces with which he must work; these are swept into form generation and activity, and embody in the transitional, ephemeral, present moment the phenomenal point in evolution reached by the life of God. The work of the initiate, acting under hierarchical inspiration, is to change the present forms into the more adequate forms demanded by the descending life and its dynamic activity.  We are therefore dealing with the precipitated aspect of divine evolutionary process. We are concerned with the relation of the Army of the Voice to the SOUND which conditions evolution, and with the supervisory work of the Hierarchy as it sustains the work of the soul to be found within all forms—built by the Army of the Voice and by the devas in their serried ranks.

The supervisory, directive work of the Hierarchy, carried forward by the Masters and Their groups and by the initiates within those groups, is seldom considered; it is, however, a work of major importance and is one definitely referred to in this rule. Fundamentally, the task set before the Hierarchy is to "let in the light"; but this time not in the sense of revelation, of vision or of illumination. These latter are all aspects of soul light; the work of the initiate is to aid in the construction of the planetary body of light—substance which will finally reveal the nature of Deity and the glory of the Lord. It is the planetary correspondence to the light-body through which Christ and all the Sons of God Who have reached perfection finally manifest. It is a vehicle created by the energy of Will, and it is implemented and "held in being" by the Will. It expresses itself exoterically by the projection of this will energy, via the central point in each of the seven chakras or lotuses.

In studying these rules for the initiate, it must ever be remembered that they concern primarily the use of the will or first aspect. This is the energy of the Monad, utilised via the Spiritual Triad and related to the personality via the antahkarana. Secondary interpretations and tertiary correspondences are always possible, but the main significance of these rules is related to the first divine aspect. You have therefore, as you reflect, think, study and correlate, to bear constantly in mind:

  1. The seven ray types.

  1. The Monad, the Spiritual Triad and the threefold personality; these constitute another septenate.

  1. The seven groups of Masters.

  1. The seven centres and their seven central points, or jewels.

  1. The four veils of maya.

Various other septenates could also be related, but such relationship is not required by the initiate who has consciously discarded all these lower septenates and works now with the seven major energies, the sevenfold field of their activity and the septenary aspect of the implementing instrument, whether planetary or individual. Simplification proceeds rapidly as one nears the goal of the spirit. Will ever concerns itself with the essentials and not with the details of manifestation. Love concerns itself with transitional, evolutionary fundamentals, whilst intelligence concerns itself with the detail and its coherent coordination in response to the impulse and attractive force of divine love and the dynamic impulse of the spirit.

Let us now proceed, after these few preliminary remarks, to take this tenth rule sentence by sentence.

These are five in number, and the first which we will consider is:

1. The rules for work within the veils of Maya are known and have been used.

Students should remember that the work of the Hierarchy is constantly conditioned by the point in evolution of the human hierarchy. In the early days of human history, thinking, and progress had practically no place, and therefore little or no effect upon the forces and energies which were active upon etheric levels. At that period, they were left in a relatively quiescent state or else were swept into activity by definite and planned impression from the Hierarchy; any effect coming from the human kingdom was due solely to mass impulse or impression. This was very little, owing to the lack of coordinated relation between units and groups within the human family. Later, as family units massed together and formed tribes, and then tribe united with tribe to form larger tribes or embryonic nations, this mass effect increased, but there was still but little thinking or direction connected with it; it was largely instinctive and—if I might so express it—the etheric plane was in reality more in the nature of a matrix surrounding a valuable creation, and was essentially protective, separating and slightly energising.

In Atlantean days, the plane whereon humanity received its major direction or unfoldment was such that the emotional, impulsive nature and the field of maturing desire became dominantly active. Then the real difficulty within the realm of maya started. Hitherto only two energies had been felt upon the etheric plane: the energy of life itself, via the sutratma, as it passed through the etheric plane in order to produce exoteric livingness upon the physical plane, and secondly, the energy of the Hierarchy as a whole, producing a slow, broad, though somewhat negative organisation of the prevalent forces. But then a third and most potent force, generated by humanity, was beginning to make an impact upon the etheric forces. Men were beginning, at this early period of human history, to desire, and this desire was not, as hitherto, of a purely animal nature and hence an emanation from dense physical substance (and, therefore, not related to a principle), but it embodied a new type of energy and was—in reality—man's first expression of the highest divine aspect. Desire is the lowest reflection within the human consciousness of the will aspect.

This potent vibration of desire was evoked by men who were as yet without any spiritual vision of any kind; they were purely material in their instinctive reactions (and rightly so at that particular time), and these reactions attracted the attention of certain purely evil energies or Beings. These Beings availed themselves of the situation in order to satisfy their desire for power—again a distortion of the will or first aspect. Thus the Black Lodge was founded. It fed upon human desire and resembled a vast overshadowing vampire. It vitiated human living and increased the growth of desire far beyond normal expectancy or hierarchical planning, thus creating false goals and standards, building a barrier between the lowest planetary centre, Humanity, and the "middle point" or centre, the Hierarchy.

It will be apparent, therefore, that the following energies were let loose within the realm of maya:

  1. The instinctive force of animal desire. This was not wrong in itself and is subject to negation in time, and normally is controlled.

  1. The stream of descending life, and this in two aspects:
  1. The life aspect, as it bestows being.
  2. The life aspect, as it preserves form.

  1. The steady impact of the attractive power of the soul, implemented by the Hierarchy and increasing in potency as time elapses.

  1. The impelling power of material desire, focussed in the Black Lodge, both feeding human desire and drawing a form of life from the massed desire of humanity.

  1. Human development along astral lines, expressing itself as certain well-defined energies or force directions:

  1. Material desire for possessions.

  1. Desire for that which is owned by others. To this the commandment "Thou shalt not steal" has reference.

  1. Personality aims and ambitions; these constitute a form of focussed desire of a compelling, life-determining nature.

  1. Aspiration, leading to vision and to the mystic Way.

  1. Purification, the conscious handling of desire upon the Probationary Path.

  1. Initiation. The first two initiations are taken, as you know, upon the astral plane, and bring complete release both from that plane of glamour and from the realm of maya.

All throughout this period, the organisation of the etheric plane has been going on, subject to the impact of energies and forces as listed above, plus certain other energies (latent or potent) with which we have no immediate concern. Both the great White Lodge and its opponent, the Black Lodge, increased steadily in potency. Gradually the forces took organised form and the four "veils of maya" or the seven separating energies became well-defined. When this differentiation was complete, two great planetary events (if I might call them so) were consummated:

  1. The seven centres in the human body (five up the spine and two in the head) were esoterically "in shape." The seven lotuses or chakras were functioning, some powerfully, whilst others remained unawakened. These seven were now visible to clairvoyant vision.

  1. The seven Ashrams of the Masters in Their seven groups (conditioned by the seven Rays) appeared, motivated from Shamballa, organised at this time upon the higher levels of the mental plane, and gradually supplied with personnel from the ranks of humanity itself, as one by one men achieved initiation.

Paralleling this activity and implemented, fed and sustained by the Black Lodge, was the appearance of glamour upon the astral plane, and to this thickening glamour humanity steadily contributed and responded. Then as evolution progressed and the human intellect began to make itself felt, "the four veils of maya" and the great "curtain of glamour" began to condition the mental plane. Illusion then appeared, and the distinction between truth and falsehood, between good and evil, and between the left hand Path and the Path of Initiation became apparent to the advanced humanity of the time. These distinctions had always been known to the Hierarchy, but now human beings were faced with them and recognised them: the great potency of intellectual choice confronted humanity and the Aryan race (as that name is correctly used to denote modern intelligent humanity) came into being.

As the ages slipped away, men contributed more and more both to the problem and to the solution of maya, of glamour and of illusion. The potency of human thought began to make itself felt; men in increasing numbers sought the Path of Liberation and so passed on into the Hierarchy; they became active and instructed opponents of the Black Lodge and intelligent wielders of energy as it can be projected downwards and used to destroy the four veils, to dissipate glamour and to dispel illusion. Humanity responded more and more sensitively to impacts—both subjective and objective—and their cooperation began to be effective and useful to the Hierarchy, necessitating some changes in hierarchical techniques, releasing hierarchical workers for other and different activities, and greatly complicating the problem and menacing the safety and the status of the Black Lodge.

One of the results of this mental development was the sending of the disciples out into the world of men; they issued forth in large numbers, and whilst preserving their conscious link with the Ashram with which they were affiliated, they could be trusted to live among men as men and to bring their potency to bear upon the problem of maya and glamour, doing so from below upwards.

This work had to be done by disciples who could stand under pressure, who would, in spite of all difficulties, live nobly and prepare for and take the initiation which was for them their next step. Several hundred years ago, only a few could be so trusted. Today (1944) there are many in every land, though there are very few in Germany, owing to the concentration in that unhappy land of the power of the Black Lodge and also to the misuse of the Shamballa force. This force has been isolated and its destructive aspect utilised in Germany, and this has been done without the paralleling activity of the love energy of the Hierarchy. It is this fact that has made it impossible (since 1933) for disciples of the White Lodge to enter. Elsewhere, however, the concentration of active disciples is greater than at any other time in human history.

I have emphasised this point because our second phrase, "let the group widen all the rents within those veils," has reference here to disciples and the groups which they have everywhere gathered around themselves. It is these groups, many in number and differing in ray potency, which will lead the world through the post-war period into the New Age. It is their pressure upon the physical plane which has precipitated the crisis between the great White Lodge and the Black Lodge. Their work is to let in the light, and where the light goes the Black Lodge must fade out and disappear. It feeds on glamour and illusion and uses the veils of maya as a protection.

Students would do well to avoid naming and differentiating the four veils. The veils themselves are transient and variable. They differ as they come under the impact of the seven rays.  It is not possible or practical to distinguish them one from the other, except from the angle of the Hierarchy, and their destruction today (though it was not so earlier) has to come from the dense physical plane, and the attack must be made by personalities and individualities dwelling in physical bodies. This is a somewhat new mode of approach, for hitherto only a very few disciples and initiates have been able so to work.

Today, hundreds and thousands of disciples are working, and thus learning to use the ancient rules for work within the veils of maya. Let me here give you some of these rules or formulas as they are to be found in The Masters' Book of Rules and as I can translate them.

  1. Focus the force at the jewel's point and find the veil that it can touch.

  1. Carry the force from point to point and then project.

  1. Look for the energy in form behind the veil attacked. A rent within the veil exists. Find it and see.

  1. A path lies through the veils, giving access to the several courts. Walk on that path, wielding destruction and clearing out the refuse in the court. The court of the money changers is the last.

  1. Meet the descending forces and find the current which is yours.

  1. Watch for the evil stream of force which seeks to mend the rents. Project upon that stream the energy of which you know. It led you from the Ashram into the veils. Use it and drive the evil back unto the astral plane.

  1. Work with the Sound and know it as the source of power. Use first the Voice; then use the O.M., and later use the Sound. All three together will suffice.

There are other rules, but these will give you the major recognitions needed to do this type of work; these are the rules which the adventuring disciple needs to know. They have been used, and should not be interpreted by the lower mind, but with the aid of the initiate consciousness.

2.  Let the group widen all the rents within those veils and thus let in the light.

We come now to a definite group injunction or instruction. The aid of the group is invoked almost in the form of an order. The point of this formulated injunction is that in the new era and in the interlude between the past (wherein prominent disciples worked within the veils of maya) and the New Age (wherein humanity itself will consciously function upon the etheric plane), the work of the esoteric groups, under the direction of the New Group of World Servers, is needed. They will have the capacity to recognise the distinction between the various veils. This is the next needed development.  The groups must focus the energy at the very centre of the group being; the group must carry the force from point to point and from veil to veil; the group must project the destroying energy and become unitedly aware of what each veil hides; the group must perform the activities (seven in all) of purification; the group must meet, accept and distribute the descending spiritual energy which will finally consummate the work done. The group—through the use of that descending current—will drive the forces of evil back on to the astral plane and will together work with the three aspects of the first ray. These are typified by the Voice, the O.M. and the Sound.

In the above you have in reality a great formula for group activity and also a potent method (once the group can unitedly work together) for the cleansing and the re-organisation of the forces active in the world today. These forces are now raging and running wild; their effect is almost tangible (being in etheric substance) and factually and visibly present under the control of the Black Lodge. This Lodge uses the voices of lying propaganda, the Word of death (which I shall not give to you for the O.M., the Word of Life, suffices), and the Sound of the densest aspect in manifestation—the sound of power in the mineral kingdom. This constitutes an unparalleled condition and creates a unique concentration of the Forces of Good and the forces of evil upon the etheric plane. The task of all groups which are working under the Masters of the Wisdom is to let in the light, utilising those rents which already exist within the Veils of maya.

Three major rents within these Veils might here be noted. They are symbolically referred to in The Bible, though their essential meaning has not been noted or comprehended.

  1. The first major rent was made by the establishment of the Law of God, and this is portrayed for us symbolically in The Old Testament in the story of Moses. He went up into the Mount of God and there received the Ten Commandments. This is the expression of divine law as adapted for humanity and as needed in the projection of those forces which will destroy, purify and reorganise. Moses, the Lawgiver, penetrated to one of the halls within the Veils of maya, and there encountered the glory of the Lord. This was of such a radiance that, as the Old Commentary puts it:

"He who entered among the first to penetrate within the veils absorbed the light and knew not how to pass it on. Neither he nor they were ready, but the light was there and likewise the two directing eyes. But only one can use, project and send the light upon its mission. The other must be blinded, and of this fact the Lawgiver was aware. He therefore veiled the light, assuming towards this end a fragment of that which he had helped destroy, and so descended from the mountain top, back to the darkness of the earth."

  1. The second, and much the most important rent, was made by the power of the second aspect when the Christ subjected the Master Jesus to the fourth initiation and Their joint influence was triumphant over death. Then we read that the veil of the Temple was split in twain from the top to the bottom. The lawgiver assisted at the first rending as the climax to the third initiation, and there was a somewhat similar process of glorification. A similar event took place at the Transfiguration of the Christ, overshadowing or rather working through the Master Jesus. But at the triumph over death and through the Great Renunciation or Crucifixion episode, a great and major rending took place. The Law, when rightly kept and interpreted, defines man's attitude upon the mental plane and serves to make a rent in the etheric veil, separating the etheric vehicle in its fourfold aspect from the dense physical form.

The rending of the second veil at the time of the Crucifixion let in light on to the second level of the etheric plane, and a new type of illumination was spread abroad upon the earth. Law and Love could now penetrate into the consciousness of humanity in a new and direct manner, as the brain of man became involved through the substance of the etheric counterpart of the physical brain; the instinct to self-preservation (one of the lowest aspects of Law) and the tendency to sensitivity (feeling or emotion, one of the lowest forms of Love) could be expressed in a more comprehensive manner.

  1. Another rending of the veil, and one of relatively minor importance, took place when Saul of Tarsus saw the glory of the Lord and was changed into Paul the Apostle. His forward moving and potent directness and sincerity, pushing along "the road to Damascus," forced him to penetrate through one of the separating veils. The Kingdom of Heaven suffereth violence and the violent take it by force. This force, working in Saul, drove him through the veil which prevented vision, and the rent thereby made brought him a new revelation. He was, we are told, completely blinded for three days, and this the esoteric records corroborate.

This is a well-known correspondence to the three days in the tomb and one recognised by esotericists; it corresponds also to the penetration into the third heaven to which Paul testified later in his life. He realised the nature of the Law, as his later epistles demonstrate; he was brought to the feet of the Initiator through the effect of love, and thus he availed himself of the two earlier rents in the veil. Whilst thus reaching out to the light, he wrote that epistle about which so much controversy has raged—The Epistle to the Hebrews. In it the results of the rending of the third veil provide the keynote and express the first and highest aspect, as the two earlier rents lead to the revelation of the third and second divine qualities. This first aspect is seen as synthesis, as the Communion of Saints, and as related to the Lord of the World, Melchizedek.

Read that epistle in the light of these remarks, and note how a great initiate endeavoured to reveal some facts, inherent in the will or power aspect. These were, however, far beyond the ken of the disciples and aspirants of the time, but can today form a true part of the realisation of humanity. Law, Love, Union or Synthesis—all these great energies have seeped into the human consciousness and now provide the platform upon which the new civilisation can be founded, the new approach to God be taken, and new human relations be implemented.

Three great rents, therefore, now exist, as well as numerous smaller and less important ones, to which no reference has been or need be made. Three great Sons of God at the moment of initiation made a major contribution to the human consciousness through their determined will-to-law, will-to-love and will-to-synthesis. Mankind was thereby aided to move forward more easily along the "lighted Way," to pass through the halls of maya, aided by the light pouring through the rents made in the separating veils by perfected divine Men at the very moment of Their triumph. A fourth great rent still remains to be made as a result of the energies released and the gained good which the three earlier rents have made possible. This fourth major rent will be made by humanity itself, standing with "massed intent," focussed through the groups which are externalisations of the Ashrams of the Masters. It will therefore be made at the time that the Hierarchy takes physical shape upon the earth again.

Bear in mind the symbolical nature of this teaching. The veils are not actually existing veils in the usual sense of that term. They are in the nature of opposing forces and energies which act as inhibitory factors to the aspirant as he seeks to make progress, and to the entire human family as it moves onward upon the Path of Evolution. They are not basically related to consciousness at all, for in the majority of cases these veils "lie on the earthward side of being and not upon the side of light"; they are essentially physical forces, and although they are the result of man's own effort and activity down the ages, they are largely unrealised, unseen obstacles to his progress.

They constitute the lowest concentration of forces precipitated from levels of activity other and higher than the physical, as you understand physical substance. If one might use a phrase which, even if true, is misleading, they lie between the subtle inner man, mental and astral, and his physical brain. They are that which prevents brain registration of the world of causes and of meaning. This inner world can be emotional or mental in its focus and in its force precipitation on to the etheric plane. It can be the fused result of personality integration and be a combination of energies; or it can be dominated by the effects of soul energy.

These, if evoked, can penetrate occultly and drive out or break down and through the separating veiling forces, thus producing coordination eventually between soul and brain. These veils are as curtains over the windows of vision. They prevent realisation of that which lies beyond the room or area of average or mediocre experience, and they prevent the light from penetrating.

The work of the three Sons of God referred to above is not concerned with the rending of the veils of their own interior life and forces, thus bringing about soul contact unimpeded and dear, or with the illumination of experience upon the physical plane. That had long ago been effected in these special and individual cases. Their service was rendered to humanity and They made rents in the veils which separated mankind as a whole from the higher spiritual experience and from registration of the fact of the existence of the Hierarchy. Theirs was a universal service, and made possible further human progress, for until some greater measure of light had been let in it was not possible for man to see and grasp the necessity to destroy the obstacles to light. The veils remain unperceived by the average aspirant until some light appears through the rents in the "curtain of impediment."

The glory of the Christ and the uniqueness of His accomplishment lies in the fact that He was the first to bring about the rending of the veils from "the top to the bottom." This He could do because He acted as the World Saviour, outside and independent of humanity; He was free from the aura of the human family and—again quoting the Old Commentary, as far as it is possible to translate these archaic terms:

"From above He worked and from the further side issued the force which tore its way into the separating forces, driving them in a threefold direction, from the point which is the highest, to the right and to the left, thus letting in that streaming force which resolved itself as light, as love, as lifting energy. Thus worked the One for Whom all men must wait. He is as man, but works not as a man. He works as light divine, as energy supreme and as the Saviour of the world of men."

Let me again quote from the same source and give you the ancient names of the veils:

"Next to the earthly plane is found the Veil of Impulsion and then the Hall of Concentration. To that succeeds the Veil of Distortion, related to the world of glamour as impulsion is to force. Beyond that veil is found the Hall of Choice. And then we find another veil, the Veil of Separation, and beyond it lies the Hall of Blinded Men—blinded by light but facing towards the final veil, the Veil of Aspiration. Four veils, three halls and many men."

I will leave you to make due application of this paragraph of stated truth and of condensed realisation. I would remind you that concentration is one thing to the aspirant, and a very different thing to the initiate, and that the choices made by the initiate resemble not those made by the disciple. The blinding force referred to can range all the way from the deep spiritual darkness in which the average man moves, through the blindness of which Saul of Tarsus was the exponent, up to that condition which overwhelms the highest Initiate as He awaits entrance into the Council Chamber of the Lord.

Blindness is a prelude to initiation of no matter what degree. It is only at the last and highest initiation that the "tendency to blindness" comes to a complete end. In the early stages of evolution, blindness is natural, innate, unavoidable and impenetrable. For ages man walks in the dark. Then comes the stage wherein this normal blindness is a protection, but has also entered a phase wherein it can be overcome.

Technically speaking, the blindness to which I have referred is something different. From the moment when a human being catches the first, faint glimpse of the "something other" and sees himself in juxtaposition to that dimly sensed, distant reality, the blindness with which I have dealt is something imposed by the soul upon the hastening aspirant, so that the lessons of conscious experience, of discipleship, and later of initiation may be correctly assimilated and expressed; by its means, the hurrying seeker is defended from making too rapid and superficial progress.

It is depth and a profound "rootedness" for which the inner Teacher and later the Master looks, and "occult blindness," its need, its wise handling and its final elimination are part of the curriculum imposed upon the candidate. This truth is recognised, though not truly interpreted, by the Masonic Fraternity. In one of the most important and highest initiations, the candidate enters with unblinded eyes and no hoodwink is applied. Then, halfway through the ceremony, he is blinded, and in that condition passes through the terrific tests, symbolic of a certain high stage upon the Path.

Blindness is therefore, esoterically speaking, the place of learning and is related to the eye, throat and heart doctrine. It is not related to the dim vision, the sensing of half truths and the gropings of the aspirant in the process of learning about himself, or as he visions the goal and seeks to walk the Path. That is a familiar condition and one to which all beginners are subjected and which they cannot avoid for it is inherent in their natures. Occult blindness is spiritually induced and "blacks out" the glory and the promised attainment and reward. The disciple is thrown back upon himself. All he can see is his problem, his tiny field of experience, and his—to him—feeble and limited equipment.

It is to this stage that the prophet Isaiah refers when he speaks of giving to the struggling aspirant "the treasures of darkness." The beauty of the immediate, the glory of the present opportunity and the need to focus upon the task and service of the moment are the rewards of moving forward into the apparently impenetrable darkness. For the initiate, this blindness is still more esoteric; there remains for him absolutely no light whatsoever—no earth light nor any light within the three worlds at all.  There is only blackness. To this the mystic has given the name "the dark night of the soul." The true dark night (of which the mystic's dark night is only a dim reflection, to speak paradoxically) marks a very exalted state of Being and stage of development. It was into the blackness and darkness that Christ penetrated as He overshadowed one of His Masters, the Master Jesus upon the Cross. This will strike a new note for many, and can only now be revealed. It is concerned with the facility with which a Master participates in the experience, subjectively realised, of the disciples whom He has prepared for initiation.  It relates also to the still higher identification of the Christ with those initiates who are taking the fourth and fifth initiations, such as the Master Jesus in the experience referred to above.

Christ is no longer the Initiator, but stands to the initiate as the Master does to the disciple. It is a curious phase of "identical participation," which evokes no reaction from the Master or the Master of the Masters, the Christ, except in so far as it enables the divine Participator Himself to face another area of darkness, veiling and hiding a still more supernal glory. The above paragraph is far beyond the comprehension of the average student, but will be comprehended by those whose eyes are open to be blinded.

Students must remember that the four veils upon the etheric plane are only the lower symbolic correspondences to certain great areas of divine expression, and that ever the glory must be approached through the darkness. Such is the Law.  These higher veiling factors can be mentioned and enumerated, but more information concerning these mysteries, this separating darkness encountered by the initiate, may not be given:

  1. VEIL I. That which faces the disciple as he wrestles with the Dweller on the Threshold and becomes conscious of the Angel of the Presence, though as yet he sees Him not.

  1. VEIL II. That which the initiate encounters at the fourth initiation and which forces him to cry out in his blindness: "My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me." The words uttered by the Christ at that time, and as the Participator, have been forgotten by the orthodox, though preserved by the esotericist. To them H.P.B. refers in The Secret Doctrine.

  1. VEIL III. That mysterious blindness which overwhelms the initiate when—as the Embodiment of all the forces of the Spiritual Triad—He faces the Monad and is impelled forward by the "devastating Will" of the first aspect. Of this I may not write. It concerns the sixth and seventh initiations.

  1. VEIL IV. That "unknown impenetrable Void, the utter darkness of negation" which Those Who are in the Council Chamber of the Lord of the World and Who are focussed in Shamballa face when the time comes for Them to "negate" our planetary life-expression and experience altogether. They must then leave behind all the seven planes of spiritual and human experience and pass onward and out into phases of Life and being for which we have no words, and of which we have no conception. They leave through the fourth veil on the cosmic physical etheric levels (on the highest plane of our seven planes) and pass on to the cosmic astral plane. There They negate its existence as They have earlier negated the existence of the astral plane, so familiar an illusion to all of us. The initiate passes on to the cosmic astral plane and finds—What? Who knows? I do not.

Thus the veils serve their purpose; blindness nurtures and protects, provided it is innate and natural, soul-imposed or spiritually engendered. If it is willfully self-induced, if it provides an alibi for grasped knowledge, if it is assumed in order to avoid responsibility, then sin enters in and difficulty ensues. From this may all of you be protected.

Step by step, the Brothers of the Light and others who tread consciously the Lighted Way have removed Themselves from the lure of form; the Army of the Voice no longer can succeed in deflecting Their footsteps and the veils of illusion no longer block Their vision and Their moving forward. A relative freedom has been gained and the initiate stands free from much that has hitherto hindered his progress; the world of form, of glamour and of seduction has for him no further appeal. He comprehends the significance of the injunction which is embodied in the third phrase of this tenth rule:

3. Let the Army of the Voice be no more heard, and let the brothers onward move within the Sound.

Putting the idea into esoteric terms, the above sentence could be paraphrased as follows: The voices and the Voice fade out. The A.U.M. is replaced by the O.M. and at the centre of that O.M. the brother stands.

The many voices of the world, the flesh and the devil are no longer distinguished; there is nothing within the consciousness of the initiate which can respond to them. The Voice of the Silence dies out also and the Word itself cannot be heard. Only the SOUND remains. This is the Sound which reverberates in the formless worlds; it is the Sound to which the Spiritual Triad responds and of which the initiate is a part, because the Sound which he makes as he proceeds upon his creative way is a part of the universal Sound. It should be pointed out that He Who stands at the very centre of the Council Chamber of Shamballa sounds forth all words, the Word, and He also utters the SOUND. This is apt to be forgotten. He it is Who intones the A.U.M. and all things come to be; He it is Who voices the Word, the O.M., and God incarnate in humanity appears on earth: He it is Who utters the SOUND, and upon that outgoing Breath holds all things in life; and—in the rise and fall of its cadences—there is found the cyclic rhythm of the creative process. He it will be Who will withdraw the Sound and centering the vibration within Himself, will some day bring to a close this periodic manifestation and carry the Sound to other localities in space, holding it in quiescence on the withdrawn breath until a later cycle of expression dawns. Then it will again be exhaled and sent forth to provide a new field of experience for the Lives which, in cyclic rhythm, again seek to manifest. The entire story of incarnation is hidden in the understanding of the SOUND and its differentiation into the O.M. and the A.U.M.

When we can identify the Sound and are no longer "moved" by the O.M., then the initiate becomes a Christ in expression and makes His appearance, either in physical form or upon the planes of what to us might be called the "areas of non-appearance." He can then contain and utilise the energies of which the Spiritual Triad is the custodian and which are the expression of the will and purpose of God.

Though the initiate may not be a part of the planetary government, and though he may not be a member of the Council at Shamballa (for only a limited number of initiates are so placed), he nevertheless has the right to move on identical levels and to prepare himself for those higher evolutionary processes which will give him entrance to the cosmic astral plane. This will enable him to "see through" and to recognise "cosmic glamour," and will give him the hidden key to the world of feeling and of sentiency of which our feeling-response and our emotional and intuitional sensitivity are but the dim and distorted reflections. This is a factor of some importance to have in mind if a right sense of proportion is to be developed.

The initiate has learnt on earth that the astral plane is in fact non-existent—at least for those of the higher degrees of initiation. This knowledge constitutes the first step towards the comprehension of the secret of negation, towards a true understanding of the basis of the ever-existent pairs of opposites, and towards the knowledge which lies behind the significance of negation. The above sentence is in all probability of little meaning to you, but it nevertheless contains a truth for which the trials, experiences and initiations of planetary existence prepare the initiate.  They endow him with those qualities which will enable him to contact cosmic evil and yet remain untouched, eventually to play his part in bringing the Black Lodge and its Brotherhood to an unholy finish. The roots of the Black Lodge are on the cosmic astral plane, as the roots of the White Lodge and its Brotherhood are on the cosmic mental plane; this is, in reality, only for the time being and in order to see certain organised activities upon the star Sirius perfected and carried to a consummation. This has oft been hinted in my writings.

"The Way of the Higher Evolution" leads to the cosmic astral plane, and the goal which carries a man there is the transcendent vision accorded at some of the higher initiations; the quality which enables him to work as a creative factor in the great White Lodge is the developed buddhic faculty. It is upon the "wings of Sound" that he travels, to use a well-known though little understood metaphor. This can only be when he can

4. Hear the O.M. as it is sounded forth by Him Who stands and waits at the very centre of the Council Chamber of the Lord.

These are grave and solemn thoughts, and of small use to the average reader. It is essential, however, that he avoid the concept that the attainment of the highest initiation upon this planet marks the end or the consummation of a great and final stage. It only marks the beginning of significance. This is a statement of esoteric value. Just as the attainment of physical control sets the neophyte free for the learning of higher lessons in preparation for the major initiations, so the surmounting of the conditions presented by the seven planes of our planetary life sets the initiate (such as the Buddha or the Christ) free for still higher and more important conditioning circumstances. Their real work as Members of the White Brotherhood is on the point of beginning, and the true purpose of the existence of the Great White Lodge begins faintly to dawn upon Their entranced and amazed understanding.  It is of real value to us, therefore, to endeavour to grasp the continuity of revelation and the vast future or vista of unfolding wonder which, stage by stage, grade by grade and plane by plane, unfolds before the initiate-consciousness.

We enter here into a consideration of realms of advancement of which even advanced humanity has no faintest idea; we are touching upon goals and objectives which confront the advanced Members of the Hierarchy; we are dealing with ideas and concepts for which we have no adequate terminology and which are of such a nature that the human mechanism of thought proves incapable of registering them. What, for instance, do the words or phrases, "Divine purpose, Shamballa, the Lord of the World, states of registration or awareness which have no relation to sentiency as it expresses itself through consciousness, the Lodge on Sirius" and similar concepts convey to you?

I would venture to suggest that in reality, they represent nothing, and this because the goal of all who read these words is contact with the soul, recognition of and by the Hierarchy, and initiation. If I say to you that the words "the O.M., as it is sounded forth by Him Who stands within the confines of Shamballa" signify that the one Sound, rounded and full, of O is sounded forth, but that the concluding sound of the M is omitted, does that convey aught to your intelligence? Again I venture to say that it does not. It is therefore of small importance for me to enlarge upon this phase of the Rules. I would be more profitably employed if I elucidated somewhat the meaning of the words "the Council Chamber of the Lord." Three concepts have perchance taken shape in your minds in connection with Shamballa, if you have sought the true esoteric attitude:

  1. That Humanity exists as a great centre of intelligent energy in the substance of the planetary Life.

  1. That the spiritual centre, where attractive, coherent, magnetic energy is focussed and from whence it flows in two directions, is what we usually call the Hierarchy, the Kingdom of God, the centre of love and of mediating understanding (note these last two words):

  1. That there is another centre which is neither spiritual nor human but which is characterised by divinity. Divinity is the expression of the will or purpose of the One in Whom we live and move and have our being. That centre where the will of God is focussed and dynamically sent forth to carry out the purpose is Shamballa.

The time has now come when a distinction must be made by esotericists between the words "spiritual" and "divine."  They are not the same, nor do they have the same significance.  The quality of spirituality is Love. The quality of divinity is Will. There is a definite distinction between the two and the mediating principle (or that which relates or unites the two qualities) is Wisdom. Of that Wisdom the Buddha was the expression in time and space; that means that there was only a relative and limited manifestation of that fusing linking principle. His great achievement, unrealised by Him, was an innate and (at that time, not now) unconscious recognition of the distinction between love and will, and an ability to express in Himself a fusing, blending energy which could and did bring together love and will, soul and Monad. At the same time (and later in full expression in Palestine) the Christ demonstrated—for the teaching of humanity—the at-one-ment of love and intelligence, of soul and personality. These are points of real importance to have in mind.

Embodying, therefore, divinity in a sense and form incomprehensible to disciples, and which constitutes the goal of such advanced individuals as the Christ, are a group of Lives or focussed integrated Beings Who stand around Sanat Kumara, the Lord of the World.

As I have earlier said, Sanat Kumara is to the Planetary Logos what the personality, plus soul, is to the disciple. He is also the coherent force within the planet, holding, through His radiatory influence, all forms and all substances in the planetary form so that they constitute one coherent, energised and functioning whole. A parallel to this, though on a much smaller scale, can be seen in the radiatory influence of the Christ as it permeates, energises and holds in coherent expression the Christian Church in all its many aspects in the world; a still smaller analogy can be seen in the influence wielded by a disciple who stands at the centre of a group and holds it also in coherent and useful manifestation.

Intermediate between these two symbols of will and love, united in manifestation (the Christ and a disciple), is the work of a world disciple, for the influence is wider and more far-reaching than that of a disciple, yet not as potent or comprehensive as that of the Christ.

Coherency, affecting lives, forms and substances, is an expression of will and purpose, motivated by love and implemented intelligently in carrying forward the plans through which the Purpose seeks expression. When, however, you arrive at the potency of such a Being as Sanat Kumara, you find His individual potency enhanced and amplified by the fused ability of a group of Lives Who—though not as far advanced as He is upon the Path of Evolution which stretches before the Planetary Logoi—are yet greatly in advance of the most developed members of the spiritual Hierarchy. It is these Lives Who constitute the innermost circle of the Council Chamber of the Lord of the World.  Their normal contacts are extra-planetary and are very seldom of a planetary nature. They are in direct rapport with the Planetary Logos upon His own high plane, the cosmic mental plane; this great and Unknown Being uses Sanat Kumara as the soul uses a temporary personality when that personality is at an advanced stage of initiate consciousness. This is only a parallel and an analogy and must not be unduly elaborated in the detail of relationship.

The major characteristic of these Lives is Will or Purpose. They embody and consciously know and intelligently appreciate what is the motivating idea which the Planetary Logos—working consciously on His own high level—seeks to work out and achieve in His planned incarnation through a planet. He functions when in incarnation on the cosmic physical plane, and embodies the seven principles of which we know, and all is focussed in and through the Individuality of Sanat Kumara, implemented and energised through the seven planetary centres. The three Buddhas of Activity (Who are also Members of the Great Council) are expressions of the counterparts on cosmic levels of the energies latent in the three permanent atoms in the three worlds of human endeavour. This is again a dangerous parallel to propose for—as a symbol—it lacks any true analogy.

The Seven Spirits before the Throne of God are also Members of the Council, and each of Them is in close rapport and contact with one or other of the seven sacred planets in our solar system, and can thus draw upon the energies which they embody.

It will therefore be apparent to you inferentially, how comparatively few of the Members of our Hierarchy have yet been able to reach the state or condition of development which would warrant Their forming a part of the great Council, or which would enable them to respond to the O, sounded out at intervals of one hundred years by Sanat Kumara. It is this sound which gathers together the responsive Units into the Council. This Council is held at one hundred year intervals, and as far as our modern humanity is concerned, these Councils have been held—under our arbitrary dates—in 1725, 1825, 1925.

At these Councils, Those Who are responsible for the planetary development, along certain predetermined lines, make Their reports; decision is made as to new unfoldments; certain types of energy, cosmic and solar, are made available for the carrying forward of the Plans which implement the Purpose; the evolution of consciousness in the three worlds receives, necessarily, major attention. I would have you remember that this refers not only to the human kingdom and its unfoldment, but to the three subhuman kingdoms also which are—from many points of view—of equal importance to the human. This is a hard saying for humanity to accept.

It is these great goals which slowly dawn on the consciousness of the initiate as he advances step by step along the Path of Initiation. They must perforce be noted here, even if dealing with matters incomprehensible to the reader; initiation otherwise would be apt to be regarded as the attainment of a relatively static condition and would land the initiate in an eternal impasse or impassable cul-de-sac. Initiation is in fact the recognition of the goals which are implemented from Shamballa. It is not a process whereby a man becomes solely a Member of the Spiritual Hierarchy. Initiation (as the candidate understands it) is in reality only incidental and preparatory to the Path of the Higher Evolution.

  1. RULE ELEVEN

I would like to speak, at this point in our discussion of the fourteen rules for initiates, upon the theme of group initiation; these rules are those to which groups that are seeking, in unison, a group expansion of consciousness, must learn to conform. It is for this reason that I have hitherto omitted to go into detail in relating these rules to the seven centres or, specifically, to the great seven solar initiations. Of these seven initiations only five concern average humanity. The remaining two initiations concern only  those who are willing to meet certain unusual requirements and to produce that special effort which entitles them to the appellation, "Victors, through the clear pure will."

Group initiation is no easy achievement, particularly as it is practically an untried experiment and constitutes essentially a pioneering effort. That such a development was inevitable, if the evolutionary growth of humanity proved in any way satisfactory, was early realised by the Hierarchy. However, it has taken millenia of years to make it seem—as an hypothetical effort—in any way possible, and only tentative experiments have as yet been attempted. The first objective of these experiments (going on quietly in various places all over the world) is to see if a group of disciples can work together in such a manner that an inner fusion can be seen—by the Masters—to be taking place.

The results, hitherto, have not been encouraging. It has, for one thing, been difficult to find disciples who are approximately at the same point in evolution, whose rays are "shining through" adequately, and who can evidence some one quality, or some controlling theme (if I may use such a phrase) which they share in unison and which would suffice to hold them together and prove strong enough to offset personality differences, preferences and barriers. It has not been possible, as yet, to do this. Group after group has been tried and tested out by different Masters in various parts of the world, and hitherto all such attempts have proved failures. When I use the word "failure" I mean failure from the angle of the planned objective. From the angle of the individual growth of any particular disciple there has not necessarily been failure; from the angle of the unwitting, general public, the publication of Discipleship in the New Age will prove in years to come an epochal success.

It might be of value to consider briefly what group initiation involves, and to do this factually and not sentimentally and aspirationally. One of the problems confronting the Hierarchy in this connection is the elimination of sentiment—that curious, emotional reaction and relationship which links all the members of a group together in the bonds of liking or disliking. Where there is liking, then too strong a personality relation is established, as far as the good of the group is concerned. The group equilibrium is disturbed. Where there is disliking, the inner faculty of rebuff works constantly, and cleavages then occur.

Is it not true, my brothers, that your relation to each other is frequently subjected to the impact of approval or of disapproval? When that attitude exists, the first steps towards group fusion are absent. This is what we mean by sentiment, and this emotional reaction must disappear as a preliminary stage. I speak not at this time anent impersonality. For some people, impersonality is simply an escape mechanism from responsibility; for others, it connotes suppression and entails such hard labour that the entire time of the disciple is given to the achievement of impersonality, thereby guaranteeing non-success. That at which you strenuously strive and which assumes undue place in your thinking, in due time becomes itself a prison and merits later destruction. Such is the occult law.  Impersonality is possible only to the disciple who knows truly how to love, and to him who sees life and its phantasmagoria (including all associated persons) in the light of the Spiritual Triad.

It is to this that Rule XI primarily refers, and it will not be possible for you to comprehend the significance of this rule unless there is a measure of clarity in your minds anent true group relationships. Such relationships are not based upon personality or impersonality, or upon liking or disliking, or on criticism or non-criticism, but upon a real comprehension of "divine indifference," spiritual detachment and deep, persistent, unchanging love. To many earnest aspirants the juxtaposition of these phrases will seem paradoxical; but an understanding of the occult paradoxes tends to liberation. In the comprehension of these basic attitudes lies the first lesson of the aspirant to participation in group initiation.

The second point which the group thus striving has to grasp is the necessity for the utilisation of the force of destruction. A group is brought together under karmic law, ashramic necessity and soul direction. Immediately there is presented to the watching Masters an opportunity for the very definite training of some willing aspirants, but also an equally definite point of tension, indicating real difficulty. There is little, in reality, to link these people except inclination, a joint aspiration and a goal seen and held in unison.

The outstanding characteristic of such a group is spiritual selfishness. This statement may surprise you until a close scrutiny of your own heart is undergone, and then I venture to predict that you will discover that it is not divine love of humanity that has enabled you to find your way into the outer group of some Ashram but desire for development, for achievement and for liberation. The first step, therefore, is to recognise this and hence the injunction so oft misunderstood: Kill out desire.  This has to be the first destructive activity of the disciple. It is not what the disciple seeks, or wants or desires which should condition him and drive him to what we might call "ashramic acquiescence," but the all-impelling motive of world need. So the disciple begins to rid himself of desire by a process of attrition. He does not positively fight desire with a view to its elimination; he does not seek to transmute it (as should the probationary disciple), but he ceases to give it any recognition; he fails to provide it with the needed stimulation of attention, for as ever, energy follows thought; he is preoccupied with world need and with the service he can render, and—almost inadvertently, as it were—desire dies of attrition.

It will be apparent to you, therefore, that it will take time for all the members of a group to achieve the destruction of individual desire, and that until some measure of this united liberating process is attained, the group cannot go forward together as a unit on the Way of Initiation.

The next step is the destruction of the ties which link the personalities of the group members. These must be severed, and the relation between the group members must be on the basis of soul activity, joint pledge to the Master of the Ashram, and a united service given to humanity. There comes a point of freedom in the group relation which will demonstrate in some definitely planned and united activity, carried forward in the outer world but enriching the life of the Ashram. Until this stage is reached, the activity of the group corresponds to that of the probationary disciple and not to that of the pledged disciple. The spontaneously emerging group work, engendered by the group consciousness and fusing the entire group of disciples at a point of tension in service, is the first indication that the group is ready for further teaching, for an intensification of its group potency and for a closer relation to the Master.

This has all been brought about by the group itself, independently of any injunction of the Master, and as a result of the united soul life of the group effectively making its presence felt. These two spiritually destructive processes—the destruction of desire and the severing of all personality ties—are the first two and essential results of true group work.

The third quality which must be utterly rooted out and destroyed is that of all reaction towards recognition, whether that recognition is accorded by the world of men, by other disciples, or by the Master. The ability to work without any token of recognition, to see others claim the reward of action taken, and even to be unaware that the results of the good initiated by the individual disciple or his group are claimed by others, are the hallmarks of the hierarchical worker. The Masters get no recognition for the work done by Their disciples, though They initiated the original impulse and have given both guidance and direction; the disciple carries out the Plan; he shoulders the responsibility; he pays the price, either good or bad, or the karmic results of instituted activity, and he is the one who gains the recognition of the crowd. But—until the disciple seeks no recognition, until he fails to think in terms of results and is unaware of the reaction of the world to his work as an individual disciple—he has yet far to go in order to gain the higher initiations. The entire problem becomes increasingly difficult when an entire ashramic group is concerned, for the recognition of the group service seems little to ask from the world which is served; nevertheless, such a demand and such an expectation delay the complete absorption of the group into the inner Ashram.

These are not, however, impossible objectives, or I would not waste your time or mine in their delineation. The group can measure up to the occult necessity if unitedly they recognise the scope of the endeavour and unitedly strive for complete absorption in service—an absorption so deep that it excludes all other recognitions, particularly those of a personal nature. We come back, therefore (as is continually the case), to the fact that when a group can arrive at a suitable point of united tension, non-essential reactions disappear and undesirable qualities are automatically removed.

These three types of work along the lines of destruction merit your careful consideration and—because they are along the line of the destroying aspect—it will be apparent to you that the method employed is that of the utilisation of the group Will. It will be equally apparent that the group Will can only make its appearance under the Law of Occult Continuity when, and if, the group is functioning intelligently and demonstrating love adequately.

We now come to the third factor which group initiation involves. This is diversity in unity, consciously recognised and utilised. A group is not composed of disciples all of whom are being prepared for the same initiation. This is oft a hard saying for group members to accept. The significance of my earlier statement, that a group is composed of men and women all of whom are at the same point in evolution, is a generalisation and simply means that all of them have reached the point where they are pledged and unalterably committed to the work of the Ashram, under some particular Master.

The work, however, requires a diversity of quality and of potencies in order to be effective in manifestation upon the outer plane. It needs those who are in close contact with the Master, and are therefore initiates of a certain standing; it needs also those who have facility of relationship with the inner Ashram and are therefore senior disciples, though not necessarily high initiates; it needs also those not so advanced upon the Path of Discipleship because they have, or can establish, a close connection with ordinary humanity in the life of everyday. A group of disciples such as this is consequently a miniature hierarchy, and a hierarchy exists in its various degrees in order to permit of a wide range of effective relationships. Ponder on this statement.  

You can see now why there is necessity for the elimination of personality reactions, for only thus could the groups function as a coordinated unit with the various members recognising each other's status and yet not moved to jealousy or belittlement thereby; the work is then carried forward on the basis of inspiration, coordination and practical application. The senior members of the group, and those with the most advanced status (whatever that may be), provide the incentive of the Plan as they receive it from the Master; the more experienced among the disciples then coordinate the Plan within the group, relating it to the Ashram and indicating its approach to the world of men; the neophytes—pledged and dedicated though yet without experience—carry out the Plan upon the physical plane. This entails, as you can see, smooth and effective coordination, a proper attention to the general picture, and an application of the detail of work to the immediate necessity. It is a hard task for a group of intensely individualistic disciples (and all disciples are individual) to begin to take the first steps towards these attitudes and the relationships which distinguish the Hierarchy as a whole.

Still another important factor in the group preparation for initiation is the cultivation of silence. How, we ask ourselves at times when the functioning of the Ashram is under discussion, can we train our disciples to realise that, essentially, silence is not refraining from speech. So many disciples seem to think that it is, and that they have to learn not to talk if they hope to take initiation. Some would do a great deal better if they talked more than they do—along right lines.  

The silence imposed in an Ashram is refraining from certain lines of thought, the elimination of reverie and the unwholesome use of the creative imagination.  Speech is consequently controlled at its source, because speech is the result of certain inner sources of ideas, of thought and of imagination; it is the precipitation (at a certain point of saturation, if I might so express it) of inner reservoirs which overflow on to the physical plane. The retention of speech and the suppression of words, if they are the result of a realisation that what is to be said is wrong, or undesirable, or unwise, or wasteful, of energy will simply increase the inner banking up and will lead eventually to a still more violent display of words at a later date; it may also bring about serious and disastrous conditions within the astral body of the disciple.

The silence of thought is to be cultivated and, my brothers, I do not mean silent thinking. I mean that certain lines of thought are refused admission; certain habits of thinking are eradicated and certain approaches to ideas are not developed. This is done by a process of substitution, and not by a violent process of suppression. The initiate learns to keep his thought apparatus in a certain effective condition. His thoughts do not intermingle the one with the other, but are contained in separate compartments or carefully filed for reference and later use. There are certain layers of thought (again speaking symbolically) which are held within the Ashram itself and are never permitted to enter the mind of the disciple or the initiate when not consciously working in the Ashram; others are related to the group and its work and are given free play within the group ring-pass-not; still others are of a more mundane nature and govern the daily life and relationships of the disciple with personalities and with the affairs of civilised living and physical plane events. These are only indications of what I mean, but will suffice to show (if you duly meditate) a little of what is meant by the silence of the initiate. Within the permitted levels of contact, speech is free and unimpeded; outside those levels, no indication is given that the other spheres of thought activity, with their conditioning speech, even exist. Such is the silence of the initiated disciple.

We have therefore considered briefly but suggestively four qualities which a group preparing for initiation needs to develop, to consider and unitedly to achieve. They are:

  1. The achieving of a non-sentimental group interrelation.

  1. Learning how to use the forces of destruction constructively.

  1. Attaining the power to work as a miniature Hierarchy, and as a group to exemplify unity in diversity.

  1. Cultivating the potency of occult silence.

RULE XI

Let the group together move the fire within the Jewel in the Lotus into the Triad and let them find the Word which will carry out that task. Let them destroy by their dynamic Will that which has been created at the midway point. When the point of tension is reached by the brothers at the fourth great cycle of attainment, then will this work be done.

On first reading this rule it is obvious that it concerns the fourth initiation and the consequent destruction of the causal body—the vehicle through the means of which the Monad has created first of all the personality, and then an instrument for the expression of the second divine aspect. We are therefore dealing with one of the major initiations. I would here call to your recollection the fact that (from the angle of the Hierarchy) this initiation is the second major initiation, and not the fourth, as it is regarded from the human angle; the third initiation is technically regarded as the first major initiation. The major initiations are really possible only after the transfiguration of the personality.

What, therefore, brings about the destruction of the soul body? The destroying agent is the second aspect of the Will. The third or lowest aspect of the Will, working through the mind or the manasic principle, was the sustaining factor in the long cycle of personality development; it was the principle of intelligent synthesis, holding the life principle intact and individualised through the long series of successive incarnations.  During that cycle the will demonstrated first as the lower man; then it focussed itself in the Son of Mind, the divine Agnishvatta, the soul, and became increasingly a factor of potency.

Later, as the disciple builds the antahkarana and thus establishes a direct channel of communication between the Monad and the personality, the lower mind becomes fused with the abstract mind or higher mind (the manasic principle, sublimated and purified), and gradually the soul is—to use a peculiar but sensitively expressing word—by-passed. It has by now served its purpose.  Love and light are in expression in the physical plane life. Neither the personality vehicle nor the soul body is required, as under the old conditions. Their place can now be taken by the Spiritual Triad and the Monad; the essential life of both the lower aspects (creative in nature and expressive of loving intent as to purpose) can now be withdrawn. Triplicity, from the angle of the three periodical vehicles—Monad, soul and personality—is resolved into duality, and the Monad (reflected in the Triad) can now work upon the lower planes through the medium of a definitely created personality or "point of tension" in the three worlds. It is to this that the rule applies when studied in terms of the individual initiate, whilst the life in which the soul is "by-passed" and its ring-pass-not is destroyed, is of such profound difficulty that it is called the life of crucifixion or of renunciation.

We are, however, concerned with the interpretation of the rule as it affects a group which is preparing for the joint initiation of its members. It is by adhering to the ancient dictum that "as it is with the Macrocosm so will it be with the microcosm," and by the application, therefore, of the Law of Analogy, that we shall eventually arrive at understanding. I cannot hope to do more than indicate significances, but it will now be clear to you why I have dealt with the four qualities which a group must develop in unison prior to initiation. We shall find it useful to relate these qualities to the various phrases or injunctions in this Rule XI. We must consider each of them separately. Let us now look at the first sentence.

  1. Let the group together move the fire within the Jewel in the Lotus into the Triad.

Let me first remind you that fire always connotes the first aspect and this, as you know, is the life aspect. To this let me add the well-known fact that "Our God is a consuming fire," and call to your recollection that the first aspect is the destroyer aspect. You have immediately established a relation between the first two qualities with which we have been dealing and the work of the crucifixion as a symbolic expression of the fourth initiation. The achieving of a selfless and impersonal group interrelation was the first prerequisite, and the word "together" in this rule deals with the work of the group when—as a closely knit unit—it can move forward. This transference of the life or of the fire has to be the result of united action, taken by the group when full interior unity has been attained. It cannot take place prior to this, any more than an individual initiate can take this particular initiation until such time as complete fusion of the three bodies and the soul has been effectually brought about and divine indifference has been achieved to all lower reactions of the component parts of the fused and interrelated instrument. So must it be with the group.

The group life must express itself upon the physical plane and in group formation. It will possess a sensitive feeling apparatus, corresponding to the astral body, and the group mind will be well organised and functioning rhythmically. Thus the group "personality" will be active, but divinely active, by the time this particular stage is reached. The group soul will also be in full flower as an expression of the inner Ashram, and at the very heart of the group life, veiled and hidden by its outer personality expression and by its vibrant loving soul, will be a point of living fire or life which—in due time and under right conditions—must be transferred into the inner Ashram, found on triadal levels.  This may or may not mean the destruction of the group causal body and the establishing of a direct line of relationship between the pure Ashram and a group of disciples. It will undoubtedly mean, during the stages preliminary to that desirable attainment, a definite change of focus and the gradual establishing of a point of tension upon slowly realised higher levels, carried on until the transference is completed.

All the time that this is taking place, the fire at the heart of the group life is becoming more and more vital, and consequently more and more spiritually destructive. The second quality which we considered, the constructive planned use of the forces of destruction, can now be seen as active. It is these forces which are often responsible for the upheavals, the cleavages, the dispersions and the fatalities which are so frequently the characteristics of the group life in its early stages.

The fire is then working under the stimulation of the Spiritual Triad, but is not consciously being manipulated by the group itself. The group becomes esoterically "a burning ground," and much time would be saved and much unnecessary distress and pain and suffering would be eliminated if the group members would realise what was happening to them and would simply stand steady until such time as the "purification so as by fire" has been completed and the life principle in the group heart can shine forth with both brilliance and radiance.  It is this quality of patient endurance which is so sorely needed by the members of a group being prepared for initiation.

Once, however, the purpose underlying all distressing events and disrupted personnel is grasped, rapid progress can be made—again by the simple practice of divine indifference. This divine indifference was the outstanding quality of the Master upon the Cross at Calvary. The seven words from the Cross were concerned with others, with His mission, with world need, and with relationship with the Father or with the Monad. But disciples and aspirants are so intensely preoccupied with themselves, their effect upon others, their endurances and pain, or with criticism of their brothers or of themselves! The goal and the main objective is not adequately emphasised in their consciousness. The group personality is often functioning with potency, but the fusing love of the soul is absent and the shattering inflow of the life at the heart of the Jewel is not permitted full sway. It is blocked and intercepted by group conditions, and until there is at least some united will to take together what is needed in order to shift the life of the group to higher levels of awareness and into the Ashram on buddhic levels, the technique of transference will not be committed to the group by the Master. That is what is meant by the next sentence in the rule:

  1. Let them find the Word which will carry out that task.

What is this technique of transference? It falls into three stages, each one of which has to be arrived at by the group in unison. The first is the stage of united tension or the attaining of such a focal point of planned and focussed intent that the group is undeviatingly oriented to the immediate task to be done and is functioning from the angle of purpose as one individual. This is perhaps the hardest stage, but it has to be mastered prior to the assistance of the Master in the inner Ashram; He is to the group what the Monad is to the disciple, ever seeking to bring about the esoteric "renunciation" of the causal vehicle.

This point of tension has to be held in high vibratory activity all through the process of transference. I would remind you that the outstanding characteristic of Jesus of Nazareth, throughout the period prior to the crucifixion, was one of complete silence; here is where the efficacy of the fourth quality mentioned by me appears. The group, at this stage, is so preoccupied with the task ahead and so conscious of the need for preserving a united and uniform tension, that "the silence of the secret place" settles on it and the work can then proceed apace. When this point has been attained, then the third quality manifests with power to work as a miniature hierarchy, and this becomes increasingly noticeable.

Now comes the result of all these preliminary stages, and it comes spontaneously and automatically. I want to emphasise that the group does not wait in expectancy for a Word to be given to it; it does not search and strive to discover a Word; it does not take some Word as may be suggested by a helpful disciple and then proceed to "empower it." The Word is the result of the point of tension; it emerges from the silence and its first expression is simply the slowly rising tempo of the group "Sound" or note. As you know, every individual and every group of individuals have their own peculiar note or sound which is the creative agent of the focussed group life.

At this point we again touch the fringe of the coming Science of Invocation. This group sound, rising as the tension increases and stabilises, is invocatory in effect and draws forth response eventually from the inner Ashram, owing to its relation to the outer group. When the response of the Master is registered in the group consciousness and His potency is added to the potency of the group, the sound emitted by the group changes in quality, is amplified and diversified, is enriched and then precipitated outside the ring-pass-not of the group life; this precipitation takes the form of a Word.

This Word, being the result of group activity; focus and tension, plus the aid of the Master, brings about three results:

  1. It produces fusion between the outer group and the inner Ashram.

  1. It enables the group life to be transferred along the group antahkarana and focusses it once and for all in the Master's Ashram.

  1. The result of this transference is twofold:

  1. The outer group dies, occultly speaking.

  1. The soul of the group, being now merged with the life aspect on levels higher than those on which the causal body exists, is no longer of major importance; the Great Renunciation takes place, and the causal body—having served its purpose—dies and is destroyed. So died, according to theological injunction, the Christ upon the Cross. Yet He died not, and still lives, and by His life are all souls saved.

It is hard for esoteric students to realise that the emphasis of the coming Schools of Enlightenment will be upon the life aspect, and not upon contact with the soul.  The goal will be transference and not union. Aspirants and disciples today are largely the result of the old order of teaching and are the flower of the processes to which humanity has been subjected.  This is a vital transition period; disciples and aspirants in the world at this time are, figuratively speaking, at the same stage as the group which we are considering—the stage of the transference of the life from the outer form into the inner being. Hence the difficulty with which you are all faced, and the arduous task it is to comprehend realistically that which I am attempting to convey.  The problem of soul contact is something which you can and do grasp, at least theoretically. The problem of life transference from the highest point of present attainment into some vague and mystical spiritual focus is not so easy to understand. Forget not, I am not looking for understanding for I write for those who will come after you, and —for those who will be the reincarnated aspects of your present selves.

You will note, therefore, how the four qualities dealt with  have enabled the group to achieve the sounding of the Word. That Word, now emitted by them as a group under the inspiration of the Master (and I use the word "inspiration" advisedly), has gone forth; it has passed beyond the sphere of the immediate group influence; it has made its initial impact upon the soul of the group and has vitalised to a new potency the life aspect, the Jewel in the Lotus of the soul. Now comes the possibility of fulfilling the third great injunction contained in this rule:

3. Let them destroy by their dynamic Will that which has been created at the midway point.

In the fulfillment of the requirement here enjoined, the group enters upon its major test in this work of transference. The group members have unitedly preserved the point of tension; unitedly they have created the antahkarana; unitedly they have invoked by the group sound the attention of the Master and of the Master's Ashram; unitedly that sound has taken the form of a Word, and that Word has made an impact upon the life aspect of the group within the form of the group soul; it has energised it so that the destruction of the causal body is now in order. The tendency of the group would then be to relax, and this quite normally; the irretrievable Word has gone forth and all is well and safely accomplished. But it is not so in verity. By the power of their united love, the group has mastered personnel difficulties and has developed together the four qualities; it has also found the Word which can affect the soul—for the Word is ever related to the second aspect, and because of that it can reach and energise the soul, the second aspect per se.

But now, in the final stages of the great work of transference, the group has to arrive at a new point of tension and of united attainment. It has to use the dynamic will, the energy of the first aspect, and so bring about the final destruction of the causal body. The life within the causal body has been stimulated and vitalised and is now seeking to break out of its confining form.

The vehicle of the soul is being subjected to pressure from within but then—both in the case of the individual initiate and of the initiated group—the final blow has to be struck also from without, by an act of the united will; this corresponds to the great cry of the Christ upon the Cross when He exclaimed "It is finished." With these words, we are told, the veil of the Temple was rent from the top to the bottom, and the life of the Christ ascended to the Father. Ponder upon the significances of these phrases. "That which has been created at the midway point" is no longer needed. No mediating principle or intermediary between man and the Father is any longer required; the Monad and the personality are in complete at-one-ment and have achieved perfected relationship; triplicity has given place to duality, and the Way of the Higher Evolution stands open before the initiate.

It will be obvious that this phase of group attainment can as yet be only a hope. It lies far ahead of the present day groups, just as the fourth initiation lies far ahead of the average aspirant or disciple. But groups must have their goals and must strive towards the vision, just as the individual must; I am laying the foundation for the phase of group living and united striving which will be so distinctive an aspect of the coming era. There are three further points which I seek to make:

First, the attainment of the ability to use the group will dynamically can be more easily understood if it is realised that it means the extension of the point of tension into realms which involve the super-consciousness of the disciple; also that the release of the life aspect from the confines of the causal body produces a new cycle of invocation and invocative activity. This brings about an inflow of the destroyer aspect of the divine Will, and consequently the complete destruction of the causal vehicle.

Secondly, it is not to be inferred that all in the group must be disciples who are in process of taking the fourth initiation. A group can be composed of disciples and initiates of all degrees, though there must be among the group personnel at least one disciple who has taken the initiation of crucifixion. This necessity is symbolised for us in the close relation which existed between Jesus as He took this initiation and the Christ Who had taken it in an earlier state of life. The more diversified the group, the richer its life and possibilities. Forget this not.

One hint I can give you upon this difficult subject: When the results of the first point of tension, prior to the emergence of the Word, have been reached, initiates of the fourth degree within the Ashram lend their aid and do much to make possible the attainment of the goal by the group.

Thirdly, I would have you note that I have given you much in a brief form and have added much of new information anent the fourth initiation. What I have said is applicable both to the individual aspirant and to a group seeking initiation. Read what I have said with attention, but remember that it is not yet possible for you to differentiate between what is symbolic and what may be factual. The secrets of initiation are thus guarded with care.

One simple rule towards comprehension and attainment ever holds good. The Great Renunciation becomes possible only when the practice of the little renunciations governs the life of a disciple and a group. The renouncing of ambition, of all personality ties, and the renunciation of all that hinders progress as it is revealed to the eye of the soul, lays a sound foundation for the final great transference, based upon the renunciation of that which for aeons has connoted beauty, truth and goodness, and which has seemed the ultimate goal of all aspirational effort. The endeavour to see that which lies ahead and beyond the apparent finality of soul fusion faces disciples, among them some of you, at this time; and that all of you may penetrate beyond the veil of the soul and eventually see that veil "rent from the top to the bottom," and thus be enabled to say with those of like degree "It is finished" is my earnest hope. Then will open for you as for others, the Way of the Higher Evolution, and the glory of the Lord will be seen in a new light—a light which will dim and throw into the shade all previous goals and visions.

  1. RULE TWELVE

The Rule which we have now to consider carries us into realms of extra-planetary energy, into a world of a larger consciousness towards which the higher initiates strive and which is related in a peculiar way to both the past and the future. This rule might also be called the formula controlling the work of the World Servers.

The three remaining rules for initiates and disciples are concerned with the work of the New Age and the coming revelation which will make that work both new and possible.  They are therefore of supreme importance to us. Step by step, in the eleven rules already studied, we have seen the initiate or disciple carried from his position as an accepted disciple standing before the Angel of the Presence, to that point of attainment where the spiritual will is released in full service and with full comprehension at the time of the fourth initiation, where atma or pure spirit is in control, where the Spiritual Triad is expressing the nature of the Monad, where identification with the purpose of deity has transcended illumination of the mind, and has also transcended cooperation through pure love with the Plan. These words are all attempts to indicate the path of progress which is—to the initiate consciousness—the necessary preparatory stage to treading the Path of the Higher Evolution, just as the Probationary Path is the necessary preparatory stage to being accepted into an Ashram. Briefly, the eleven rules already dealt with might be regarded as controlling the conscious activity of the initiate in the following stages and relationships.

  1. The stage of the burning ground and the establishment of illumined group relation. This is revealed by the mind, functioning as an aspect of the group mind.

  1. The stage of ashramic recognition and the establishing of a forward-moving group rhythm; these reciprocal activities produce a needed group tension.

  1. The stage of emitting the group sound and the establishing of the power to invoke divinity, followed by a united group realisation that "God is Fire."

  1. The stage of extinguishing the lesser fires through the means of the above realisation, and the establishing of a defined group reaction to the divine purpose or will; this results eventually in the negation of the Laws of Karma and Rebirth as they condition life in the three worlds.

  1. The stage of triadal perception and the establishing of spiritual contact, thus negating both the life of form and the soul. Duality is no longer recognised.

  1. The stage of identification with the life aspect and the establishing of complete divine integration into the greater Whole. The initiate then moves onward in life and not in consciousness—a concept and a truth which it is not possible for you to understand at this time.

  1. The stage of a group sounding-forth of the Word and establishing direct relation with Shamballa as an integral part of the Hierarchy. This means the enunciation of a dual chord.

  1. The stage of responding to the higher aspects of the seven Ray Lives and establishing contact with the Three and the One. This is done under the Law of the Supplementary Seven.

  1. The stage of spiritual negation, as it is called. This establishes a new affirmative attitude and results in a recognition of the true nature of the One Initiator.

  1. The stage of the dissipation of all veils and the establishing of the power to work with light energy, thus earning the reward of new utilised ability, i.e., the ability to work with the consciousness aspect in all forms.

  1. The stage where the potencies of the death aspect of divine purpose can be used to carry out divine purpose, plus the establishing of complete identification (as a group) with the divine will. This marks the period of the Great Renunciation and prefaces the complete transition out of the Fourth Creative Hierarchy, the human kingdom.

This is a brief and inadequate summation of the more general and the more easily comprehended results of obedience to these rules. The initiate stands free and becomes consequently a dynamic factor within the working Hierarchy. Rule XII now becomes clear to him, not only through the realisation induced by his illumined mind, but through the higher divine qualities which are related to the expression of the will and purpose of the planetary Logos.

It will of course be obvious to you that only those who have reached the stages of work described in Rules X and XI will truly comprehend my meaning. I would warn you again that the obvious significance of the remaining three rules is not in reality the true spiritual significance because we are in these rules dealing with the planned work of the Hierarchy during the next great cycle, that of the Aquarian Age, we shall therefore be considering those activities and plans which will usher in and mature that new culture and civilisation which will slowly come into being when the world has straightened itself out after the processes of the world war (1914-1945).

Rule XII

Let the group serve as Aquarius indicates; let Mercury speed the group upon the upward Way and let Taurus bring illumination and the attainment of the vision; let the mark of the Saviour, as the group toils in Pisces, be seen above the aura of the group.

You will remember that the rule as given to applicants emphasised: